By Stanford Chiwanga
The Bulawayo woman who was mauled by her landlady’s five dogs in March received a hero’s welcome yesterday at the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo (JMN) International Airport in Bulawayo.
After spending three months at Kiran Hospital in India, Ms Cherish Muchegwa, who was accompanied by her husband, Mr Joseph Masaiti, was met at the airport by the Deputy Minister of Industry and Commerce Raj Modi and a delegation of more than 50 people from Abundant Life Revival Mission Church.
Members of Abundant Life Revival Mission Church who were allowed into the airport’s tarmac area, burst into praise and worship songs as Ms Muchegwa and her husband disembarked from an Air Zimbabwe plane.
Ms Muchegwa, who doctors feared would never walk again after sustaining stomach-turning injuries from the rabid dogs, walked down the plane’s steps without being assisted by anyone. She went to India on a wheelchair and came back on her feet.
When she reached the ground, she refused to use the wheelchair that the airport staff had offered and instead walked to meet fellow church members.
“It’s an honour to receive such a welcome. I am overwhelmed by the love the people of Zimbabwe have shown me. To be recognised and loved by everyone home is an honour. I am thankful for the people of Zimbabwe who made this possible. Special mention goes to Raj Modi, his relatives and friends, the Minister of State for Bulawayo Judith Ncube, the church (Abundant Life Revival Mission Church), United Bulawayo Hospitals and all the people who donated their money and prayed for me.
“I also want to thank the doctors and all the staff at Kiran Hospital. From the moment I arrived in India they treated my husband and me well. I have no complaints but praise. Whoever wants to be treated in India I recommend Kiran Hospital. Above all else I want to give praise to God. He has been good to me all the time. He stood by me throughout this ordeal. Now all I want to do is go home and eat isitshwala,” said Ms Muchegwa.
Modi, who is also the Bulawayo South legislator, said he was happy that Ms Muchegwa was recovering well after the operation and gruelling physiotherapy sessions she was put through at Kiran Hospital.
“When I first saw her injuries I thought the chances of her making it were very slim but I said to myself we should try to save her life. I am one of the happiest people in Zimbabwe right now, I am happy to see her walk. I want to thank everyone who chipped in to help her because without your support we could not be celebrating her walking today. I also want to applaud the church and its pastor (Prophet Itai Ukama) for standing by her. Seeing people cheering and shedding tears of joy shows that we still have decent people in Zimbabwe,” said the renowned philanthropist.
Ms Muchegwa and Mr Masaiti and their family were escorted home in Newton West by a convoy of 20 cars, including five which were donated by Modi. The Chronicle