Late national hero and National University of Science and Technology (Nust) founding Vice Chancellor Professor Phineas Makhurane’s wife Lydia has died.
Mrs Makhurane died last Thursday at the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) two days after President Mnangagwa posthumously conferred her late husband with Order of the Star of Zimbabwe Award on Heroes Day.
Her son, Mr Mookgetsi Makhurane confirmed his mother’s death yesterday.
“She had been suffering from dementia for quite a number of years and of late the condition had been complicated and had turned for the worst. She was taken for review on Wednesday, at a private clinic. She was treated and we took her back home. On Thursday afternoon, I received a call that I must rush home as she was not doing well. I got home and picked her up and we rushed to UBH, unbeknown to us she had already passed on,” said Mr Makhurane.
He said it was unfortunate that his mother died before he could explain to her about the award his father had received.
“I’m the one who had travelled to Harare to receive the award. Unfortunately, she was not aware of the award because her health condition at that point was such that she wasn’t cognisant of her husband having received an award. My point was to come and present the award to her and explain what had happened. We actually didn’t get the opportunity to do that unfortunately,” he said.
Mr Makhurane said his mother will be buried next to his father in Gungwe, Gwanda South, Matabeleland South on Friday.
He commended the Government for honouring his father for the contributions he made in the education sector.
“In my capacity as his son, and having had the opportunity to go and receive the award on his behalf, we indeed want to express our gratitude and thanks to the Government for recognising him even after his death. This is quite an honour to us as a family that he is still being recognised even posthumously. We want to extend our thanks and gratitude to the nation and Government,” said Mr Makhurane.
“She was the pillar of strength to the founding Vice-Chancellor and she passes away when the late Prof Makhurane had just been posthumously conferred the Order of the Star of Zimbabwe Award for his academic excellence and unshakable commitment to promoting the welfare of his fellow human beings, dedication to duty, and a degree of humanity that is both refreshing and inspiring in Zimbabwe’s journey towards Vision 2030,” read the Nust statement.
“On behalf of the Nust Council Chairman, Eng Alvord Mabena and the entire Nust Council, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Mqhele E Dlodlo, management, staff, students and alumni, we wish to express our sincere condolences to the Makhurane family.” – Chronicle