Munashe Ngonidzashe

Munashe Ngonidzashe
Munashe2018.jpg
Mambo of Rwizikuru
Reign21 September, 2019 - present
PredecessorKupakwashe Ngonidzashe
Heir apparentTavonga Ngonidzashe
MutungamiriTsuru Mawere
Born (1969-01-18) 18 January 1969 (age 52)
Port Fitzhubert, Rwizikuru
SpouseNyengeterai Ngonidzashe
IssueTavonga Ngonidzashe (b. 1992)
Shungu Ngonidzashe (b. 1994)
Pamhidzai Ngonidzashe (b. 1996)
Taremekedzwa Ngonidzashe (b. 1998)
Taurainashe Ngonidzashe (b. 2001)
Kuchema Ngonidzashe (b. 2004)
Tyler Barnes (b. 2012)
Full name
Gideon Munashe Ngonidzashe
HouseHouse of Ngonidzashe
FatherKupakwashe Ngonidzashe
MotherRudorwashe Ngonidzashe
ReligionHigh Estmerish Church

Munashe Ngonidzashe (born 18 January, 1969) is the current monarch of Rwizikuru, having ascended the throne on 21 September, 2019, after the abdication of his father, Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe.

Early life

Munashe was born to Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe and Rudorwashe Ngonidzashe in Port Fitzhubert, and was the eldest of three sons, and baptized into the High Estmerish Church as Gideon Ngonidzashe.

He entered the Charles Fitzhubert School in 1974, and was described by his teachers as being an "excellent student," with one old teacher comparing him as "more willing to learn than his father." He continued to attend the Charles Fitzhubert School until 1978, when the royal family moved to the newly-completed Guta raMambo, and was sent to the newly established King Izibongo School.

Crown prince

Initial years

On 21 September, 1979, his grandfather, Izibongo Ngonidzashe died in a car accident, leaving his father, Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe as Mambo of Rwizikuru, and thus, he became heir to the Rwizikuran throne. In 1980, he was formally designated korona muchinda in Port Fitzhubert, and from that point started getting more education from his father to teach him on how to run Rwizikuru.

The death of his grandfather greatly affected him, with Munashe saying in 2008 that "the death of my grandfather affected me because suddenly, my father, who was my rock became tied down to his job." His academic performance declined, with Munashe "barely getting into grammar school."

However, by the time he started attending the Shungudzemwoyo Ncube Grammar School in 1981, his academic performance started to improve to his previous levels. In 1984, he made his first solo public appearance, as he gave the commencement speech at the Charles Fitzhubert School. In 1987, he finished yechitanhatu fomu, and graduated from the Shungudzemwoyo Ncube Grammar School, and enrolled at the University of Rwizikuru to major in political studies.

In 1991, he obtained a bachelor's degree from the University of Rwizikuru. However, he was ordered by his father to stop pursuing higher education, and instead focus on his role as crown prince.

Dunhu of Gutaguru

In 1992, he was appointed dunhu of the Gutaguru district, which was widely seen by observers as a way to start preparing him for him to become the next monarch of Rwizikuru. As the head of the Gutauguru district, Munashe Ngonidzashe was given a "taste of power."

Over the next few years, Munashe instituted several policies of his own, such as investing in infrastructure for the capital of Guta raMambo, providing all residents of the district with water and reliable electricity, and cracking down on corruption. While by 1999, corruption had reached pre-1988 levels, Gutaguru had the lowest levels of corruption of any district in Rwizikuru, with corruption levels remaining below what it had been in 1988.

In the early 2000s, however, this started to change, as Munashe started to be more tolerant of corruption within the district. At the same time, his frequent recreational trips abroad, especially to Chadwelle in Estmere, where he acquired two properties, and his reputation as a bon viveur became more and more well known.

Increasing prominence

In 2006, Munashe Ngonidzashe was dismissed from his position as dunhu of Gutaguru district by Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe, and was reassigned to the position of royal treasurer to succeed his second cousin, Mweya Ngonidzashe, who was removed from the line of succession for allegedly committing an adulterous relationship, and then fled to Caldia to join the government-in-exile led by Muchazvireva Ngonidzashe.

As royal treasurer, he was noted by one official in 2008 to be "more willing to take his father's orders than his predecessor," with funds from the royal treasury often given to the royal family. He continued to serve as treasurer until 2016, when his son, Tavonga Ngonidzashe was appointed to take his place as treasurer.

By that point, he started taking on more and more of his father's duties, with Munashe making frequent trips, both domestically, and abroad to represent the King. Over the next few years, as his father reduced his role in politics, Munashe became more and more important.

In August 2019, Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe announced his intention to abdicate in September after signing an agreement with the Global Institute of Fiscal Affairs which would transform Rwizikuru into a constitutional monarchy in exchange for receiving aid to end Rwizikuru's corruption.

Reign

Coronation

On 21 September, 2019, Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe signed a decree which renounced his own rights, and the rights of any children born on or after that date, as well as their descendants, from ascending to the Rwizikuran throne. After countersigning it, Munashe Ngonidzashe and his father headed to Saint Chloé's Church for the coronation.

Unlike his grandfather or his father, Munashe refused to wear their coronation crown, instead commissioning a crown to be made in Estmere, and in an Estmerish style. Thus, after swearing the oath to be a "just and upright ruler for the veRwizi people," Priest James Gumede anointed him with holy oil, before crowning him as Mambo.

He proclaimed his wife, Nyengeterai Ngonidzashe, to be the Mambokadzi, his eldest son, Tavongo Ngonidzashe as korona muchinda, and his father as Baba waMambo. After being acclaimed as Mambo, he then received homage from all the traditional chiefs, before the ceremony concluded.

Later that day, a lavish banquet was held at the Imba yoRudzi.

Constitutional convention

Following the appointment of fourteen delegates by Kupakwashe Ngondizashe on 12 August, 2019, and the election of twelve delegates in the first nation-wide elections since 1959 on 16 September, 2019, the delegates were called to the University of Port Fitzhubert on 24 September, 2019.

On 1 October, 2019, with all the delegates present, Munashe Ngonidzashe formally opened the constitutional convention, to draft a new Rwizikuran constitution to supersede the Basic Law of Rwizikuru. Munashe, as declared by his father, was to serve as the chairman of the constitutional convention, and thus would be presiding over the proceedings.

After four months of work, the new constitution was promulgated by Munashe Ngonidzashe on 17 January, 2020, and scheduled the first elections under the new constitution to take place on 3 April, 2020.

On 7 April, 2020, he officially became a constitutional monarch when the National Assembly elected Tsuru Mawere to be the first head of government under the 2020 constitution.

Personal life

Munashe Ngonidzashe married the twenty-year old Nyengeterai Dangarembga in 1989, and has three sons with her: Tavonga Ngonidzashe, Taremekedzwa Ngonidzashe, and Taurainashe Ngonidzashe. They also have three daughters: Shungu Ngonidzashe, Pamhidzai Ngonidzashe, and Kuchema Ngonidzashe.

In addition, he engaged in an affair with Ophelia Barnes, and had a single son with her, Tyler Barnes, in 2012. However, his birth led to a scandal in both Rwizikuru and Estmere, which forced them to end the relationship due to pressure from Kupakwashe Ngonidzashe, his wife, Estmere First, and by Estmerish high society.

He is fluent in weRwizi, Estmerish and Gaullican, and can "comfortably hold a conversation" in Marathi.

He has been known to frequently visit Chadwelle in Estmere, with Munashe admitting in 2016 that "I've always enjoyed Estmerish culture." He owns two properties in Chadwelle, and has been said to have a "close relationship" with the Estmerish aristocracy.

Titles, styles, and honors

  • 18 January, 1969 - 5 February, 1980 Changamire Muchinda Munashe Ngonidzashe
  • 5 February, 1980 - 21 September, 2019 - Changamire Korona Muchinda Munashe Ngonidzashe
  • 21 September, 2019 onwards - His Most Faithful Majesty Munashe Ngonidzashe
  • Full regnal title - His Most Faithful Majesty Ngonidzashe III, by the Grace of God, and by the will of the Rwizikuran people through the MR's heroic efforts against the colonizer, Mambo and N'anga of the Rwizikuran nation and of the veRwizi people

Domestic honors

  • Rwizikuru - Anogamuchira iyo Kurongeka kweTembo, 1988
  • Rwizikuru - Anogamuchira iyo Kurongeka yeMeriti, 1991
  • Rwizikuru - Changamire kwoRudzi, 2019

Foreign honors