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Brigadier-General David Sigauke lays a wreath on the casket bearing the body of Colonel Panginatsiyo Kufa during a funeral parade at Inkomo Barracks in Harare yesterday

Nyashadzashe Chamwaura Herald Reporter
Deputy Commander of 2  Infantry Brigade Colonel Panginatsiyo Kufa, who died on Wednesday of lung cancer has been conferred with liberation war hero status.Col Kufa was 52.

He will be buried today at his Inyathi Farm in Karoi with full military honours.

Major-General Trust Mugoba, who officiated at a funeral parade for Col Kufa at Inkomo Barracks yesterday made the announcement on the hero status.

He said Col Kufa was a hard working cadre, loyal and an experienced soldier whose service in the army was cherished.

“It was indeed shocking and quite disheartening to learn of the untimely passing on of a hard working, loyal and experienced officer who many of us never imagined could be taken away from our midst,” said Maj-Gen Mugoba.

“His services were still critically required both in the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the nation at large.”

Maj-Gen Mugoba said Col Kufa was one of the dedicated officers who stood firm during the economic meltdown period when the country was gripped with the hyperinflation as a result of illegal sanctions imposed by Western countries.

“Colonel Kufa is one of the few qualified and experienced officers who stayed behind to ensure the organisation’s operational capabilities remained steadfast,” he said.

“The late Colonel Kufa was a rare kind of an officer who had the enviable gift to mix freely at all levels both in his work and social life. The senior officer will be sadly missed both in the Zimbabwe National Army and the Zimbabwe Defence Forces at large.”

Maj-Gen Mugoba said Col Kufa received several medals in the army for his relentless commitment including 10 Years Service Medal, Long And Exemplary Service Medal, Democratic Republic of Congo Medal, Liberation Medal and Independence Medal.

Col Kufa held several ranks in the army as a Second Lieutenant in 1988, Lieutenant in 1989, Captain in 1992 and was promoted to Major whilst serving with the Parachute  Group.

He also participated in active service both in Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of Congo campaigns.

Col Kufa is survived by wife Musa (nee Sikabe) and three children Witness, Arnold and Rebba.