Enos Nkala

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Enos Mozombi Nkala (23 August 1932 – 21 August 2013) was one of the founders of the Zimbabwe African National Union. During the war, he served on the ZANU high command, or Dare reChimurenga as Treasurer (dura remusangano), and when imprisoned Paul Tangi Mhova Mkondo took over underground internally the role (dura remusangano). He was detained by the Rhodesian government at Gonakudzingwa for 12 years with the rest of the ZANU-PF Leadership, consisting of Ndabaningi Sithole, Leopold Takawira, Robert Mugabe, Edgar Tekere and Morris Nyagumbo. When Edgar Tekere was in prison, he tabled the motion of having Ndabaningi Sithole removed as the supreme leader and replaced by Robert Mugabe. Enos Nkala & Morris Nyagumbo voted in favour of Robert Mugabe becoming leader (Mugabe, himself abstained in the vote), thus Robert Mugabe became leader to ZANU-PF until present. ZANU-PF was also formed in Enos Nkala's house in Highfields.[1][2]

Following independence in 1980, he served as the Minister of Finance until 1983, when the portfolio was consolidated into Finance, Economic Planning and Development and handed over to Dr. Bernard Thomas Gibson Chidzero, a senior minister. Nkala was instead moved sideways to become Minister of National Supplies until 1985, Home Affairs and Defence after the 1985 election. As Defence Minister he was involved in the notorious Gukurahundi massacre of Ndebele people. He denies this.[3]

Nkala stated that he regretted his involvement in the Gukurahundi. He said that if he had the chance he would never do it again. Not only did he describe his involvement as "eternal hell," but publicly blamed Robert Mugabe for having ordered it. At the Imbovane YaMhlabezulu meeting held in Bulawayo on 26 February 1998, Nkala, who was one of the guest speakers alongside Joseph Msika (National Chairman of ZANU-PF), repeatedly denied any involvement and responsibility in the Gukurahundi genocide.

While serving as Zimbabwe's Home Affairs Minister, Nkala rejected allegations by Amnesty International, the London-based human rights organisation, which had reported beatings, electric shocks and other torture at government detention camps after the general election in Zimbabwe in July 2006.[4]

Nkala claims to have written a book chronicling all that has happened in ZANU PF since its formation, including the Gukurahundi Massacres and the assassinations of several high profile politicians using car accidents. He blames the death of the liberation war heroes Josiah Tongogara and Herbert Chitepo and others on Robert Mugabe. He is alleged to have had an affair with Sally Mugabe.[5]


While a minister in the Zanu-PF government, Nkala became embroiled in the 'Willowgate' scandal, concerning the allocation of new motor vehicles to government officials, especially ministers, by Willowvale Motors in Willowvale Harare.[6] The vehicles were subsequently sold at a huge profit. The scandal was eternalised in song by Solomon Skuza, a Ndebele musician, in the hit single 'love and scandals', in which he asks "how can someone buy a car and sell it again?" a reference to the nature of the scandal.

2008 election

On 21 April 2008, following the March 2008 presidential election, Nkala urged his "colleagues to let President Mugabe retire with dignity".[7]


Enos Nkala died on 21 August 2013 at a hospital in Harare after a heart attack. He was 81.[8]

Political offices
Preceded by
Role Not Created
Treasurer (Dura ReMusangano) ZANU Next:
Paul Tangi Mhova Mkondo


  1. Martin, D. and Johnson, P. (1981). The Struggle for Zimbabwe. Faber & Faber. ISBN 978-0571110667.
  2. "Who's who of Southern Africa". Books.google.com. Retrieved 2015-11-26.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Nkala denies contributing to Gukurahundi, wants Mugabe prosecuted SW Radio Africa
  4. Zimbabwe rejects charges that detainees are tortured NY Times
  5. Enos Nkala says Mahachi was killed over DRC diamonds SW Radio Africa
  6. Geoffrey Nyarota, editor, Bulawayo Chronicle Willowgate revisited two decades later Zimbabwe Standard
  7. Kitsepile Nyathi, "Mugabe party’s founder shocked as country hurtles to abyss", Nation Media, 21 April 2008.
  8. "Zanu PF founder Enos Nkala dies - NewsDay Zimbabwe". Newsday.co.zw. 2013-08-22. Retrieved 2015-11-26.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>