A former Zimpapers librarian and freelance journalist Mr Sydney Themba Bonzo has died. Bonzo (63), succumbed to cancer of the colon at the United Bulawayo Hospitals on Tuesday. His son, Mr Butholezwe Ndlovu, said he had been battling the disease for almost a year.
“He has not been feeling well for almost a year and passed on at 1 AM on Tuesday. We are saddened as a family because he leaves a huge gap. He was a versatile hard-working man who was a pillar of strength in the family,” said Mr Ndlovu.
Mr Bonzo held a Diploma in Library and Information Science, City and Guilds Certificate in Librarianship and a Certificate in Research and Documentation.
He worked at the University of Zimbabwe Main Library as a Technical Assistant before joining Zimpapers (Harare Branch) in 1980 as Deputy Librarian and rose to be Chief Librarian.
He moved to Modus Publication in the same capacity in April 1990 until 1995. He later joined Zimbabwe Inter-Africa News Agency (Ziana) as the Senior Chief Librarian between 1996- 2001.
He had a short stint with African Newspaper Group in 2002 before rejoining Zimpapers in 2003.
“His management acumen at the different institutions he worked for won him the ZUJ Remarkable Contribution in the Media Library and Information Management (2007). He was a keen sports administrator and freelance journalist, and was for 23 years the long serving administrative secretary of the all-black Eradicators Hockey Club which was chaired by former prosecutor and now labour court judge Justice Custom Kachambwa. Together with Justice Kachambwa they produced senior hockey national team players like midfielder Nathan Sundayi, the late Adam Ngoma, dribbling wizard Aleck “Dr No” Isulu, Keith and Vincent Kachambwa, amongst a host of talented players.”
Mr Bonzo was also a freelance sports journalist, a keen boxing follower and won the Zimbabwe Boxing Writer of the Year three times in a row (1989, 1990 and 1991) which was sponsored by Lorraine Muringi.
He was also the founding sports writer of Kwayedza. He also spent some time in South Africa where he worked for a real estate company.
He later adopted a career in farming and was manager for Duma Farming Estate in Mashonaland East.
“The farm is owned by the wife of a senior Zanu PF member and former minister. He led strategic planning and business development in farming and livestock production at the farm,” said Mr Ndlovu.
He was born on 3 August 1955 in Old Bricks, Mbare, Harare. At a tender age he moved with his parents to Mufakose where he did his primary and secondary education. He later did librarianship at the Harare Polytechnic. He moved with his family to Bulawayo in 1985.
He is survived by wife, Patricia, son Butholezwe, a daughter-in-law and two grandchildren.
Mourners are gathered at house number 1770 New Magwegwe, Bulawayo. The Chronicle