GUTU – A prominent senior school head, Joseph Mushayi from Chiguhune Primary in Gutu committed suicide on Saturday morning by hanging himself from a tree near his homestead.
He was 60.
Family members said Mushayi hang himself at around 3am on Saturday following some family differences. His lifeless body was discovered at around 7am, the same time he was supposed to be chairing a Roman Catholic Mission Council meeting at Chitepo Primary Schoool some 20km from his home.
Mushayi who held many senior posts in the education sector including being National Association of Primary Heads (NAPH) chairman for Gutu North; Better Schools Project Zimbabwe management board member, former provincial treasurer for Zimta and a cluster chairman for schools in Gutu North was buried at his rural homestead at Mvimvi in Soti Source, Gutu on Monday morning.
The funeral was conducted by Frs Maxwell Mabvuure and Cleopas Magundani of Roman Catholic’s St Bakhita Parish.
Sani Chirikure, acting District Schools Inspector, who spoke at the funeral later dismissed speculation that Mushayi committed suicide because he had cases of misconduct with his employer.
“He had no case with the Ministry at all. We had no case with Mushayi,” said Chirikure on the sidelines of the funeral.
Chirikure said Mushayi was a very senior head having been promoted many years ago when he was only a young man.
Speaking at the funeral, Tariro Muvhunzwi who is Gutu North Zimta chairman said Mushayi rose through the ranks of Zimta, starting off as a branch chairperson, then district chairman and later becoming provincial treasurer.
“He was a great trade unionist who nurtured most of the leaders who now run Zimta. His death is a big blow and he is irreplaceable,” said Muvhunzwi.
Gutu South Zimta chairperson Nathan Jefurai said teachers were deeply touched by the death of Mushayi. He described the late as a brave trade unionist who articulated the challenges facing teachers.
“We envy his efforts. It is a pain that he took his life as this is not congruent with the man,” said.
Hwingwiri Mushayi, the brother to the late said Mushayi was born at Farm 237 in Nyazvidzi Gutu in 1957 and he went to Dambara and Mandiki for his primary education.
He did his form one to four at Gokomere High School and did his teacher training at Nyadhire Teachers’ College in Mutoko.
He later taught at Nyadhire Primary before moving to Cheninga and later Majada both schools in Gutu.
He taught at Matizha Primary and Mutero Central Primary School where he was promoted to deputy school head grade 1.
He moved to Marinda Primary in Mwenezi before moving to Tongogara Primary in Gutu as deputy head.
He left Tongogara in 2001 to become head of the neighbouring Chiguhune Primary.
He was married and had 11 children.