By Mtandazo Dube
After the matter of who — between Cde Chinx’s two wives Patricia and Ntombizodwa — would get the Sentosa house at its handover ceremony in May 2017, the late Cde Chinx is said to have asked his benefactor, Joseph Nyadzayo, a question that still haunts him to this day. “He said to me, ‘Ko Zodwa pane chamamuitirawo here’ (Does Zodwa also get something)?’
“I realised that we had made a blunder, that we had to do something for the younger wife as well,” said Nyadzayo.
Zodwa is a shortened version of Cde Chinx’s wife’s name : Ntombizodwa.
The second wife confirmed Nyadzayo’s claims, adding that her husband was distressed and died a bitter man after a “sudden unilateral decision” was made to give the senior wife the house.
“It had been decided that I should not get a share of the house and he asked Nyadzayo and the others what they would do for me. He did so three times. I could see he was distressed. He died a very bitter man because of that issue,” said Zodwa.
“Remember that house was built with two bedrooms for the comrade’s two wives. Even though we were not going to stay there together, I needed to retain half ownership of the property,” she charged.
But that is not all.
Zodwa claims that at Cde Chinx’s funeral, a certain lawyer showed up claiming that there was a will. However, the same lawyer later “disappeared”.
“A man came and said he was a lawyer. He said Cde Chinx had written down something about his estate. I later tried to contact him but he started acting up. Maybe someone got to him,” she said.
Zodwa insisted that she does not want anything for herself, but for her children.
“Vana havana chavakawana (the kids didn’t get anything). It affected them a lot and in turn it affected me too. I’m the one who has young kids. I believe that something should have been set aside for my kids to finish school and so forth.
“I left the police force on medical grounds in December last year, which means I could use this help. We are managing though.”
And it seems like Zodwa’s children have got the musical genes.
“They are all very talented. The other one plays guitar for the Airforce of Zimbabwe, the other one is a very promising hip-hop artiste while the young girl who is still at school is already appearing on dramas on television,” she said with pride.
Zodwa said to add insult to injury, her children now feel like they are not Cde Chinx’s progeny.
“I’m now being treated like I was his whore, I was his wife. My father in-law and my husband’s sisters are the ones that came to pay lobola to my people. His children are there. The whole world knew that Cde Chinx had two wives. Why was I treated that way?
“Rangu barika ndoo raita sei? Mutemo wakandiregerera. Anga asingazive kuti comrade vane vakadzi vaviri ndiyani? Nyika yakandipandukira (What was so special about our polygamous union? The law let me down. Who did not know that the comrade had two wives? The whole nation turned its back on me).”
Zodwa argued that the Chairman’s Award (the Sentosa house) that Cde Chinx got was a result of his musical exploits, which she was a part of. “I composed music with my husband. We performed together, wrote together. Now even the Zimbabwe Music Rights Association is telling me that I can only get 20 percent of the royalties. It is very absurd,” she said.
She added: “My husband and I are the ones who used to send money to maiguru (the senior wife). It’s just that I come from a good family, I was brought up well. Otherwise I could have caused mayhem from the start.”
Fortunately, it is not all doom and gloom for Cde Chinx’s widow.
Nyadzayo, who has been working on a film based on the life of Cde Chinx since 2012, says all the proceeds will go towards the second wife’s upkeep.
According to Nyadzayo, Cde Chinx died before the film could be concluded but it had already been agreed that the proceeds would go towards his younger wife.
Nyadzayo said Ntombizodwa’s mortgage still needs to be cleared. He pledged to ensure that whatever proceeds are realised from the film will go towards that.
“She stays in a flat and it has some outstanding monies. I wish to pay off that money from proceeds of the film,” he said.
“The film was already in the pipeline. We had been to Chinx’s rural home in Rusape, where we filmed him in his mother’s hut narrating his life story from birth, how he grew up. We had been to Chimoio, Mozambique, retracing the steps that he took to and from the bush war,” said Nyadzayo.
“I’m in good stead with the widows, ma queen amukoma wangu (my brother’s queens). ‘Ma queen angu’ (my queens), that’s what he called them.
“Chinx’s family is my family and I’m going to ensure that I fix this thing. I started it.”
Nyadzayo added: “I’m happy with Chinx’s family the way it is right now. The only thing I’ll have to remind all of them is never to let Cde Chinx’s music die.
“Look, Macheso is grooming his kids and we have seen many other offspring of late musicians carrying on with their departed parents’ legacies. I wish one of Cde Chinx’s children takes up this challenge,” said Nyadzayo.
Zodwa is grateful for all that Nyadzayo has done for their family.
“That man’s heart is golden. I wish him a long prosperous life. He had built the house with his friend’s two wives in mind but his programme was hijacked.
‘‘‘He told me his plans with the film. I hope all goes well,” she said.
Ntombizodwa, a former police officer, is now enjoying her retirement at her home in Norton. The Sunday Mail