John Bredenkamp, a controversial millionaire businessman who captained the national rugby side before independence has died, the Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU) announced on Thursday.
He was 79.
“It is with a heavy and sad heart that the president of the ZRU announces the sad passing of our former Sables player and captain John Bredenkamp this morning,” the ZRU said in a statement.
One of Zimbabwe’s richest people, Bredenkamp was reputed to have amassed a personal fortune of US$870 million from activities such as sanctions busting on behalf of the Rhodesian regime, tobacco trading, arms sales and diamond mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Born in Kimberley, South Africa, in 1940, Bredenkamp moved to Zimbabwe with his parents as a child, and worked in the tobacco industry after finishing high school at Prince Edward in Harare.