Funeral parade for Tapfumaneyi

Air Force of Zimbabwe Commander Air Marshal Perrance Shiri lays a wreath on a casket bearing the body of  Group Captain Dr Christopher Tapfumaneyi during a funeral parade at Manyame Airbase in Harare yesterday

Air Force of Zimbabwe Commander Air Marshal Perrance Shiri lays a wreath on a casket bearing the body of Group Captain Dr Christopher Tapfumaneyi during a funeral parade at Manyame Airbase in Harare yesterday

Herald Reporter
A funeral parade for the late Retired Air Force of Zimbabwe Group Captain and Ministry of Health and Child Care principal director Dr Christopher Tapfumaneyi was held yesterday at Manyame Airbase.

Dr Tapfumaneyi died at the Avenues Clinic on Wednesday after a short illness.

He was 63 and will be burial at Glen Forest Memorial Park today.

Speaking during the parade, Air Vice Marshal Jacob Nzvede, who spoke on behalf of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, described Dr Tapfumaneyi as a strong-willed and hard working senior medical officer.

“We are still baffled as to the reasons why such a principled, hard working, loyal and experienced senior medical officer could be taken away from our midst when his services were still critically required by the nation.

“Your loss indeed is as much our loss. Despite the fact that he had since retired from the Air Force of Zimbabwe, we still viewed him as belonging to the Air Force.”

Air Vice Marshal Nzvede said Dr Tapfumaneyi was awarded the independence medal, Mozambique campaign medal, the 10-year service medal and the long and exemplary service medal in recognition of his courageous and exemplary service.

Dr Tapfumaneyi was born in Goromonzi and attended Shingirayi Government Primary School from 1959 to 1964 and later Mabvuku School from 1964 to 1965 for his primary education before enrolling for his secondary education at Kutama in 1965 where he obtained his Ordinary Level in 1969.

He enrolled at St Ignatius College for his Advanced Level from 1970 to 1971.

Dr Tapfumaneyi enrolled for a medical degree at the then University of Rhodesia from 1972 to 1973 and University of Ibadan, Nigeria from 1974 to 1979.

Upon completion of his studies in Nigeria, he returned to an independent Zimbabwe and was subsequently attested into the Air Force on August 1 1981 as an officer cadet.

He was later commissioned to the rank of Flight Lieutenant and promoted to Squadron leader on March 1, 1984, Wing Commander on February 1, 1985 and Group Captain on March 1, 1989 which he held until his retirement on December 30, 1996.

Dr Tapfumaneyi held various positions in the army which included medical officer at Manyame Hospital and director general medical services at Zimbabwe Defence Forces Headquarters.

After he retired from the Air Force of Zimbabwe, Dr Tapfumaneyi was recruited into the Ministry of Health and Child Care where he held various positions at Harare Central and Parirenyatwa hospitals.

He rose to the position of principal director in the ministry which he held until his death.

The funeral parade was attended by senior Government and ZDF officials.