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First Lady’s aide laid to rest

President Mnangagwa yesterday described the late Albert Vunganai, who was a close aide to the First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa, as a professional cadre who was dedicated to his work.

The late Albert Wunganayi
The late Albert Wunganayi

The President said this in his condolence message read before Vunganai’s burial by the Deputy Director General in the President’s Department, Walter Tapfumaneyi, at Glen Forest Memorial Park in Harare yesterday.

Vunganai (36) died on Friday from injuries sustained in an accident in the Mavhuradonha mountain range in Muzarabani when the First Lady and her team were on a tour of duty to distribute foodstuffs to the elderly and vulnerable families.

Deputy Director General (Operations) in the President’s Office retired Brigadier General Asher Walter Tapfumaneyi hands over the Zimbabwean flag to the late Albert Vunganai’s wife Nancy during burial at Glen Forest cemetery in Harare yesterday. — Pictures by John Manzongo
Deputy Director General (Operations) in the President’s Office retired Brigadier General Asher Walter Tapfumaneyi hands over the Zimbabwean flag to the late Albert Vunganai’s wife Nancy during burial at Glen Forest cemetery in Harare yesterday. — Pictures by John Manzongo

Three other security officers were injured in the accident and are recovering in hospital.

Vunganai’s burial was attended by scores of people including senior officers from the President’s Department.

He was a principal security aide in the President’s Department at the time of his death.

In his graveside condolence message, the President described Vunganai as an exemplary security and intelligence officer.

“It was with great shock and deep grief that my wife and I received the tragic news of the untimely death of Mr Albert Tonderai Vunganai, principal security officer, following a car accident in Mavhuradonha, Mt Darwin district, Mashonaland Central Province,” said President Mnangagwa.

Colleagues in the President’s office who worked with the late Albert Vunganai performing drills they used to do together during burial at Glen Forest cemetery in Harare yesterday.

The President said he knew the late Vunganai when he was part of his security detail during his tenure as Vice President before he was re-assigned to the First Lady’s close security unit in 2017.

He added that the late Vunganai discharged his duties with professionalism and was a team player.

“Vunganai was a very good and exemplary security and intelligence officer, who discharged his duties with absolute loyalty and dedication, which are the hallmark of a professional cadre. His untimely departure, therefore, leaves a deep void among his colleagues which will be difficult to fill as he was such a good team player.

“On behalf of Government, my wife, and indeed on my own behalf, I wish to express our sincere condolences to the Vunganai family, especially his wife Nancy and the children, during this dark hour of grief. May they take comfort from the knowledge that we grieve with them, as their loss is ours together,” said President Mnangagwa.

Members of the President’s office who worked with the late Albert Vunganai carry the casket to its final resting place at Glen Forest cemetery.

In his remarks, Deputy Director General Tapfumaneyi said the late Vunganai had distinguished himself in the course of his work, resulting in him rising through the ranks to become principal security aide from the time he joined the President’s Department in 2008.

“Cde Vunganayi’s presence was felt in the organisation due to his predisposition for hard work. He quickly came to grips with the demands of his job and began to excel ahead of his peers,” said Deputy Director General Tapfumaneyi.

He is survived by his wife Nancy and two children. The Herald

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