WASHINGTON DC —
Enos Nkala, one of the founding members of Zanu and former minister in President Robert Mugabe’s government, died early Wednesday morning at the Avenues Clinic in Harare.
Not much information has made been available about the cause of his death but previous reports say he had a kidney ailment.
The 81-year old had fallen out with Mr. Mugabe but had appeared to be mending their relationship in recent years. The Zanu party was formed in his house in 1963.
Nkala, 81, served as the Minister of Finance from 1980 to 1983. He also held other ministerial portfolios like National Supplies, Home Affairs and Defence.
He was forced to resign from government in 1989 after a Willogate car scandal that claimed the scalps of many Zanu-PF heavyweights. Some politicians were alleged to have been involved in corruptly acquiring vehicles and selling them for profit under a state-sanctioned scheme.
As Defence Minister Nkala allegedly played a key role in the Gukurahundi massacres in Matabeleland that claimed the lives of thousands of people in the 1980s.
But the outspoken Nkala consistently rejected the accusations that he was one of the architects of the massacres in Matabeleland and Midlands, accusing in turn Mr. Mugabe, then prime minister of the country, of being the brains behind the killings.
Nkala once threatened to write a book exposing the people behind the massacres.
He said the book would be released after his death.
Zanu-PF spokesman Rugare Gumbo said the nation has lost a true nationalist in Nkala’s death.