Mat South political leadership mourns Cde Choene

By Sifiso Tshaka

Zanu PF Matabeleland South provincial Chairperson, Cde Rabelani Choene has died.

He passed away at his rural home in Malusungani, Beitbridge last night at the age of 71 due to COVID-19 related complications.

Confirming the sad news, Matabeleland South Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, honourable Abednico Ncube said the death of Cde Choene was a great loss to the province.

He said the country will forever be grateful for the critical role he played in the fight for political freedom and contribution to the development of the country after independence.

“We learnt with great shock the untimely passing of Cde Choene last night. 

“We are deeply saddened as a province as he was a very dedicated and patriotic cadre who played a key role in the liberation struggle. We salute him for uniting our province and for working tirelessly to ensure that Zanu pf remains a formidable force.”

Other political leaders in the province noted how Cde Choene had worked tirelessly to defend the gains of the liberation struggle, describing him as a principled man.

“We at a loss of words really. Cde Choene will be remembered for being a straight talker, a hard worker and a man of principle.”

“For the past week Cde Chone has been visiting various districts as part of a programme to strengthen party cells. That is how much he loved his party. We say go well son of the soil.”

Cde Chone joined the liberation struggle under Zipra in 1974 when he crossed to Zambia through Botswana.

He then travelled to Morogoro, Tanzania where he trained as medical officer.

In 1976 he operated at GCB Gokwe region which was later known as the Northern front. 

During the same year, he was promoted to zone medical man and later the Zone commander.

In 1978, he was elevated to the position of Deputy Regional Medical Man, a position he held until cease fire.

After independence Cde Choene held several posts within Zanu PF and at the time of his death, he was the party provincial chairperson and the war veterans provincial secretary for health.

He is survived by wife Lydia, one child and 5 grandchildren.