HARARE – President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa became a teetotaller during the liberation struggle in Mozambique after he witnessed fellow comrades die of excessive alcohol consumption.
The President revealed this when he was Vice President during his official visit to China while touring beer manufacturing giant Tsingtao Brewery Co. Ltd, in Qingdao Shandong province.
After he was taken through the production lines of the brewing company, Mnangagwa was invited to sample some of the company’s beer brands. But after making a toast, he smiled and kept holding his beer mug, much to the amusement of the hosts and his delegation, who expected him to take a sip. Other members of his delegation, including the Minister of Industry and Commerce Dr Mike Bimha, quickly emptied their mugs.
Mnangagwa then explained: “Let me tell you something. I used to drink alcohol a lot during the liberation struggle but abstained after we lost some of our finest men not because of bullets or bombs from the enemy, but due to excessive consumption of alcohol.
“We then sat down as commanders and said can we allow this to continue? Can we continue to lose our men to alcohol? Since that time I have never taken alcohol,’’ he said.
Tsingtao Brewery Company Limited is China’s second largest brewery and it’s subsidiaries across that country are involved in the production, distribution, wholesale, and retail sale of beer products. The company also exports to over 80 countries.