The final party to be thrown for Zimbabwean socialite and businessman Genius “Ginimbi” Kadungure will be on Friday, but this time guests will have to bring their own champagne because he won’t be there to top up their glasses.
It will be the second party at the Domboshava residence, about 30km on the northern outskirts of Harare, in the space of two months. The first was his 36th birthday party, when he spent at least $50,000 (about R780,000) to entertain 400 invited guests.
The upcoming one will be his funeral wake, a day before he is buried at his upmarket mansion. And to make things clear, the invitation says “bring your own bottle”.
Kadungure died instantly in an accident in the early hours of Sunday in his R5m Rolls-Royce Wraith which veered off the road and hit a tree before going up in flames. Three other people died in the crash.
Since most of those around Ginimbi were relatively well-off businesspeople living champagne lifestyles of their own, drinks such as Ace of Spades, Veuve Clicquot Rich, Moet, and a variety of expensive reserve whiskies are likely to be produced from the boots of Range Rovers and other luxury cars.
All roads will lead to Domboshava, a village known for pottery and market gardening. Kadungure was born there and he saw it fit to build a mansion there when he “made it” instead of the usual thatched mud huts that are a characteristic of the area.
His sister Juliet said he often spoke about wanting to “go out with a bang” because he was a “big” person. As such, he will be buried almost a week after his tragic death.
“He always reminded us how he wanted his funeral to be. He had a plan and always said “ndiri (I am) big”, so make sure at my funeral, you do not hurriedly bury me. Everyone who will be at my funeral must be dressed in all white, no matter who. He said he had friends all over the world, so when he died they should be given time to come and attend, so never hurry,” she said.
Ginimbi had a way with international celebrities. In 2018 he set tongues wagging when he hosted Ciamera Jimenez, a New York adult performer of Puerto Rican descent who goes by the alias Cici Amor, at his mansion for two weeks.
Among friends he counted Nigerian pop superstar Davido, Big Brother Africa star Pokello Nare and SA celebs Bonang Matheba and DJ Tira, among others.