February 27, 1970
|Known for||Being the goalkeeper that led Dynamos Football Club to the CAF Champions league final in 1998|
|Notable work||Opening Garvey School of Excellence in Marondera|
Ernest Chirambadare is one of the most prolific goalkeepers to have played for Dynamos Football Club and the national team.
Chirambadare was known for having a great goalkeeper with a safe pair of hands. He played for Dembare in their historic run in the African Champions League. Among some of Chirambadare's contemporaries were Chamu Musanhu, Stewart Murisa, Lloyd Mutasa and Memory Mucherahowa. Chirambadare played for several big clubs during his day which included the likes of Blackpool Football Club, Black Aces, CAPS United Football Club but the best part of his career was arguably at Dembare. Prior to Chirambadare's heroics with Dembare in champions league, he had helped Blackpool carve their own piece of history by becoming the Zimbabwean club to reach the semi finals of the continental tournament. Chirambadare had a very successful football career spanning over twelve years until eventually he moved to the United Kingdom where he currently resides and works as a nurse.
Chirambadare disappeared from Zimbabwean football in 1999 at the age of 29 after relocating to the United Kingdom following the frustrations of being unfairly treated by the Dynamos board, but he returned home 13 years later.
“That one hurts (leaving Dynamos). I have a feeling that those who were in-charge at the time had an ulterior motive once we qualified for the group stages (of the Champions League). They accused us of selling the final game and actually fined us for protesting our innocence. We lost our skipper (Memory Mucherahowa) during warm-up due to him having been head-butted by ASEC Mimosas players in front of hundreds of cameras and reporters.’’
Chirambadare is said to have been a prominent member of the MDC and for some time he is said to have been a public speaker at some of the party's rallies. When he was at the point of being deported, Chirambadare is said to have argued that he would be killed it he was to come back to Zimbabwe due to his involvement with the MDC.
Life After Football
Chirambadare started focusing on the emancipation of blacks through his positive education and urged the youth not to look beyond Africa for salvation. With that philosophy in mind, Chirambadare opened a school in Zimbabwe named Garvey School of Excellence after the late Jamaican historian and activist Marcus Garvey in Marondera, 75.5km outside Harare. Garvey died almost eight decades ago and his war cry was education as a pathway to freedom for black people.
One of Garvey’s most popular quotes is: “It is by education that we become prepared for our duties and responsibilities in life. If one is badly educated, he must naturally fail in the proper assumption and practice of his duties and responsibilities because the Negro has been badly educated.”
Just like Garvey, Chirambadare dreams of an environment in which Africans’ education will help them become self-sustainable. The school, which is self-funding and headed by his mathematician wife, has four classes — Form One to Four — but when fully operational, should take up to Advanced Levels.
"Yes, I am into education or should I say education is into me. The idea came to me and my wife (then girlfriend) Rebecca Muzambi after studying the writings and teachings of The Honourable Marcus Garvey. His teachings had a great impact on our lives that it was only natural to open up a school in his honour here in Africa," said Chirambadare. The school is located in Marondera and at the moment it’s a day school but with the intention of having a boarding school in the near future. We are currently adhering to the national education curriculum.
Though the school is now running, at first he had hurdles to clear.
“Parents were a bit sceptical but are now catching on the vibration. They couldn’t connect my being a former football player and education. They just couldn’t fathom it because of the negative and unfounded stigma footballers have of being ‘supposedly’ uneducated,” Chirambadare said.
- , FIFA.com Published: No Date Given, Retrieved: March 3, 2015
- Dynamos through to finals, Mail and Guardian, Published: November 8, 1998, Retrieved: March 3, 2015
- Dumisani Mahlaba Chirambadare in trouble, The Herald, Published: November 28, 2001, Retrieved: March 3, 2015
- Zimbabwe suffering in 'brawn drain', BBC Sport, Published: February 12, 2001, Published: March 3, 2015
- I'll be killed as a traitor at home - soccer hero, The Guardian, Published: January 13, 2002, Retrieved: March 3, 2015
- Albert Marufu, , The Herald, Published: 6 November, 2018, Accessed: 3 May, 2020