Seasoned banker, economist and business executive Mr Elisha Mushayakarara, who succumbed to cancer of the colon on Sunday in Harare, will be buried tomorrow. He was 71. The decorated executive died at the Avenues Clinic and is expected to be laid to rest at Greendale Cemetery. His widow Mrs Thandiwe Mushayakarara said she could not stomach her husband’s death.
“He was a dedicated and responsible family man, a very loving and reserved person,” she said.
“He was a family man who was of unquestionable moral standing.”
Mr Mushayakarara’s successor at ZB Financial Holdings, Mr Ron Mutandagayi, described him as a hard worker and person of high integrity who served his country well.
“He was an illustrious son of Zimbabwe and a visionary business leader,” Mr Mutandagayi said.
“Personally, he was an easy going, humorous, courteous and affable individual.”
Mr Stanley Mahlahla — who worked with Mr Mushayakara after Independence — said he enjoyed a good working relationship with him even after he left the public service to join Zimbank.
“He was permanent secretary in the Ministry of Finance and I was head of planning.
“Under the arrangement, we worked extremely well for about six years. I left the ministry when I joined the Planning Commission, which was headed by Richard Hove.
“He was responsible for the budgets and we were responsible for planning and interacted very well until the time he left the public service to join ZB, then Zimbank.”
Kingdom Bank founder Mr Nigel Chanakira, described Mr Mushayakarara as a person “who had a good standing as a banker.”
“I knew him when I was working at the Reserve Bank in the public debt section.
“He certainly brought in lots of experience in terms of treasury management when he joined the Government from Zambia Finance Ministry.”
Mushayakarara was Zimbabwe’s first secretary for finance at Independence in 1980 and was part of a 1966 Commonwealth initiative that sought to prepare black Rhodesians to run the country.
He briefly joined Zambia’s public service, staying there for 12 years while he furthered his education.
He joined the finance ministry on returning home at independence.
He was secretary for national supplies in the Ministry of Finance (Zimbabwe) from 1982-84, senior secretary for finance (1984-93) and group chief executive of ZB from 1993 to 2013.
Mr Mushayakarara served as Bankers Association of Zimbabwe president for two terms and was part of the pioneers of the Chitungwiza dual carriageway construction.
At the time of his death Mr Mushayakarara had retired from ZB Financial Holdings after serving as group chief executive officer for 20 years, but continued as chairman of two listed companies and sat on a number of boards.
He was also a tobacco farmer.
The business executive held a Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics, London 1967-82.
In addition, he also held a Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics from the University of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
Mr Mushayakarara served as non-executive chairman of the board of RioZim Limited since August, 2012. He had been non-executive director of RioZim since April 17, 2012.
He has also been Chairman of a number of ZB Financial Holdings subsidiary companies, as well as associate companies and Chairman of the Insurance and Pensions Commission.
Mr Mushayakarara is survived by his widow, three children: Valentine, Valery, Vincent and three grandchildren Kenny, Leonie and Dile.
Mourners are gathered at House number 3 Barrington Close, Glen Lorne.