1348: President Mnangagwa now addressing. He said 29 July was a dark day for the nation and Zanu PF. We lost a disciplined cadre, a great son of the soil. Bigboy Benjamin Chikerema better known as Perrance Shiri is no longer with us. Shock thus grips us all especially, those who interacted with him daily and until the fateful day he looked well.
Today we are gathered here to bid farewell to a hero. I express my deepest heartfelt condolences to the Chikerema family. It is a painful time for them and all of us who intimately interacted with him during the struggle and after. Death has divided us.
1342: Master of ceremonies Cde Kazembe Kazembe said he lost a brother, father and mentor.
1339: Nimrod Chikerema speaks on behalf of the family. He says Minister Shiri was the family’s roots. Cde Shiri, he said, was bred and groomed by Zanu PF.
The family only spent 17 years with him before he left to join the liberation war.
1323: President Mnangagwa arrives at the shrine for the burial of Cde Shiri.
1302: Vice President Constantino Chiwenga has arrived.
1257: The body of the late national hero has arrived at the Shrine on aboard a Doves vehicle.
1250: People have started arriving at the National Heroes Acre ahead of the burial of the national hero former Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Minister Perrance Shiri who was also known as Benjamin Chikerema during the liberation struggle.
Minister Shiri succumbed to Covid 19 in the early hours of Wednesday.
He was 65.
Already at the national shrine are Home Affairs Minister Kazembe Kazembe, Minister Murwira among others. Also present are former ministers, Zanu PF leaders and other senior Government officials. Service chiefs have arrived.
1248: All is set for the late national hero Cde Perrance Shiri’s burial at the National Heroes Acre