Rumbidzayi Zinyuke Manicaland Bureau
Retired Brigadier-General Temba Kanganga, who died on August 1, was buried at his rural home in Derembwe Village under chief Zimunya over the weekend.
He was 60.
Brig-Gen Kanganga, whose Chimurenga name was Cde Jack Perry Chigwagwagwa, passed away in Chitungwiza after a long illness.
Speaking at his burial, Zimbabwe National Army Commander Lieutenant-General Edzai Chimonyo said the nation was saddened by the death of Brig-Gen Kanganga.
“It was indeed shocking and quite disheartening to learn of the untimely passing on of a dedicated and loyal General Officer. This is someone that we respect, he saved the lives of many people and even today some of those people are still here. He has left behind a legacy that we can trace. Today, as we enjoy all the freedoms we have, we should remember people like Temba Kanganga, who loved their country, who loved peace and were willing to sacrifice their lives for them,” he said.
Brig-Gen Kanganga was born on March 16, 1959 and attended Derembwe Primary and Marange High schools.
He left school while he was in Form Three in 1976 and crossed into Mozambique to join the liberation struggle.
He was trained at Doroi Refugee Camp as a medic, before moving to Chimoio Base where he was involved in and survived the 23 November Chimoio attack by the Rhodesian forces in 1977. The late Brig-Gen was later sent to Romania for military training where he specialised in engineering. He returned home after independence and was attested into ZNA on March 15, 1981.
He received training on Explosive Disposal in the United Kingdom in 1983 and upon his return home, was appointed Second-in Command 2 Engineer Squadron.
He saved many lives at the Sheraton Hotel where he diffused a number of time bombs that are suspected to have been planted by agents of Apartheid South Africa to jeopardise Zimbabwe’s plans to host an annual meeting of Commonwealth countries.
The late Brig-Gen rose through the ranks and was promoted to Colonel and appointed Commander Zimbabwe Engineers in 1992.
He was promoted to the rank of Brigadier-General in 1997 and posted into the Adjutant General’s Pool due to ill-health.
Brig-Gen Kanganga retired from the Zimbabwe Defence Forces on April 30, 1998 and he later co-formed a de-mining company, Koch Mine-Safe, with some German nationals.
Through his company, he spearheaded the removal of more than 2 000 land mines including anti-personnel mines along the North Eastern Zimbabwean border from Msengezi to Mkumbura.
Brig-Gen Kanganga is survived by his wife Rhonia and four daughters — Linda, Tafadzwa, Rufaro and Jennifer.
Family spokesperson and older brother to the late Brig. Gen, Dr Ezra Kanganga expressed his appreciation to the ZNA for the dignified send-off his brother received.
“He was ill for a long time and there was assistance which we received from different quarters in the country. This is a testimony of the type of person he was. He was a committed patriot who did a lot of things for this land, some of them dangerous.
“That is why you are seeing so many (Army) Generals here to bury him. It is a proper and suitable acknowledgement of the role this man played. As a family man, he was exceptionally reliable and he would do things in an exemplary fashion,” he said.