Befitting send off for veteran journo Sibanda

Staff Reporters


“It is rare for government to send officials to come and bury a journalist.”
These remarks were made by the Deputy Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting
Services, Kindness Paradza at the burial of award-winning veteran journalist and media consultant at
New Ziana, Fanwell Sibanda who was laid to rest at his rural home in Lower Gweru on Tuesday
“Government saw it fit that our journalism hero cannot just go just like any other ordinary person.
Government saw it fit to come and mourn, and remember the works done by our hero. Fanwell was
one of our own and we have come here to be part of the process to bury him, and give him a decent
send off as government,” said Deputy Minister Paradza.
The send-off was part of government’s way of honouring his immense contributions to the media
sector. He said Sibanda’s loss had been felt across the media industry.
Paradza said among other things the late Sibanda, will be remembered for the Zimbabwe Year Book,
which captured the work being done by the government.
“The Yearbook was published last year and showed what was done by government,” he said.
New Ziana Chief Executive Officer Ray Mungoshi described the late Sibanda as a principled,
committed, dedicated, and an ultimate professional who worked for a number of media
organisations in the country.
He said Sibanda represents the last of a dying breed of hardcore journalists who believed in the
journalism profession.
“He represents people who are passionate about journalism not who come into journalism as a
stepping stone,” he said.
Mungoshi said it was a pity that Sibanda died at a time when he was needed to pass on his expertise
to young and upcoming journalists.
He described Sibanda as a jovial and humble journalist who never bragged about his achievements
but let his skills do the talking.
Mungoshi said they were poorer without him and youngsters coming into the profession should
emulate his work.
At the time of his death, Sibanda was the production manager at New Ziana, and was in charge of
the layout and sub-editing of all the eight community newspapers.
His long-time colleague Funny Mushava who he met in 1986, said Sibanda was nicknamed General
Agusto Pinochet because he was stubborn but very principled.

Mushava, who is New Ziana Community Newspapers Group Editor-in-Chief, said Sibanda had an
entrepreneurship spirit in him that saw him do a number of projects.

“He was selfless and always wanted to impart what he knew in the new generation of journalists. He
was way ahead of our time. We did the same training although him a bit later than me, but was a
guru in social media space, layout and others.
“He was principled, selfless and a hard worker.”
Sibanda died last Saturday in Harare and was buried at his rural home in Insukamini, Lower Gweru at
the age of 58. He leaves behind two children.

Comments are closed.