Business sector mourns ex-Delta boss Chiura

Enos Dzengedza Chiura
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HARARE – Renowned businessman, consultant, award-winning business leader and former Delta Corporation executive chairman, Enos Dzengedza Chiura, also known as EDC,  who died late afternoon on Tuesday was laid to rest at Greendale Cemetery yesterday afternoon.

Mr Chuira was 89 at the time of his death.

The sad news was confirmed by his son, Allen, who is an American board-certified consultant urological surgeon in private practice in Harare.

Mr Chiura’s accomplishments included becoming Delta Corporation Limited executive chairperson and inaugural chairperson of Zimbabwe Sun Limited (now African Sun Limited).

Other luminaries who worked with the late business icon included Patrick Rooney, Ron Stringfellow (CEO), Eric Bloch, Robbie Mupawose and Muchadeyi Ashton Masunda. He is credited with having Zimbabwe Sun (African Sun) listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange in April 1990.

He also served as the chairperson of Central Africa Building Society (CABS); Merchant Bank of Central Africa (MBCA) Limited, and National Social Security Authority (NSSA).

His expansive career took him to Rhodesian Breweries, as a marketing researcher 1968-1969, consultant, 1969-1976 and manager of marketing services, 1977-1978. He also worked there as manager of marketing National Breweries, 1978-1979.

He was also executive chairman Oklahoma Bazaars, United Bottlers, 1980-1982.

At Delta, Mr Chiura served in the capacity of manager manpower resources, from 1979-1980, deputy chairman, from 1985-1986, executive chairman in 1986 and led Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) as its chairman in 1986, Bank of Credit and Commerce Zimbabwe 1981. He was also the director of African Distillers in 1986.

The late Mr Chiura also served with distinction on the council of the revered Institute of Directors Zimbabwe. He was an alumnus of Georgetown University in Washington DC.

Mr Chiura was also very passionate about the development of his beloved Zimbabwe.

Former Delta chief executive, Joe Mtizwa, a protégé and admirer of Mr Chiura as a business leader and person, and attended the late business leaders’ burial yesterday, spoke highly of the huge positive impact Mr Chiura left at Delta and on Zimbabwe’s private sector in general.

“I  am at a loss for words, he was unique you know, he was very very different from the rest of the people I knew. He was a very professional person, but the distinguishing characteristic that I always say about him is that he was selfless, he put the interests of other people first.

“He was always wanting to make sure that everybody he came into contact with was uplifted, talent developed so that people were successful. He is the guy who was very strong on succession planning and human resource development at Delta

“He really transformed Delta in terms of the complexion of the leadership. In the post-independence period, he was the champion for African and black advancement. It was really a mission for him and he succeeded incredibly well.

“By the time he retired in 1996, the majority of top leaders at Delta were black by then. So, we leant a great lesson from him, he was a man of integrity, a man of unquestionable integrity. He used to say to us we must be squeaky clean; no corruption, no underhand deals, highly ethical; I am running out of words to describe him, he was very humble.

“I remember after I had retired from Delta and I started writing books, I went to his house to see if I could convince him to write a book about him. He said ‘Joe I don’t want publicity,” Mr Mutizwa.

He pointed out that Mr Chuira’s impact went beyond Delta to a national level. His relationship with the Government was exemplary, Mr Mtizwa said. He worked very closely with every Cabinet minister in the early Government in independent Zimbabwe.

“He was, if I recall correctly, always hosting Cabinet Ministers right up to the Vice President of Zimbabwe, vaMuzenda.

“He would come to Delta, he would sit with him and he would give him the best advice.

“So I think he played a much larger role than people realise in terms of stakeholder management, interacting with the Government and ensuring there was a smooth relationship between the Government and private sector.

Mr Mtizwa said in every company that he chaired, outside of his roles at Delta, he would leave a lasting positive impact and these including BanABC and CBZ, “he had that kind of impact”.

He also set an example to other corporates in terms of what should be done, Mr Mtizwa reckoned.

“You saw other companies starting to emulate Delta, for example on good succession planning. He was visionary in the sense that when some of us came in at an early age, in the 1983 era, he had a plan for, for me in particular, over a 15-year period,” he said.

Businessman and renowned economist Eddie Cross, who had not heard about Mr Chiura’s death, was shocked by this publication. “He’s dead?”, he exclaimed, further expressing his disbelief “Oh my goodness, he is a legend.”

Asked what kind of person he knew Mr Chiura to Mr Cross said “I think Enos Chiura was one of the most outstanding business persons and he made a huge contribution to the private sector in Zimbabwe. “He was a person of absolute integrity, nobody ever Challenged Enos’ integrity in any way whatsoever. I think he was an example of  an outstanding business leader and passing, I think we should all recognise that it’s a real loss to Zimbabwe.

“We are all getting older, but all the same, Enos was exceptional in every way. I think he was a real gentleman and a family man, Mr Cross said. – Herald