Fay King Chung
Fay Chung.jpg
Minister of National Affairs, Employment Generation and Cooperatives
In office
PresidentRobert Mugabe
Ministry of Education, Sport and Culture (Zimbabwe)
In office
PresidentRobert Mugabe
Preceded byDzingai Mutumbuka
ConstituencyNon-constituency Member of Parliament
Deputy Secretary for Administration in the Ministry of Education, Sport and Culture
In office
PresidentRobert Mugabe (1987–)
Prime MinisterRobert Mugabe (1980–1987)
Personal details
BornMarch 1941
Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe)
Political partyZanu-PF
Spouse(s)Rugare Gumbo (divorced)
ChildrenChipo Chung
Alma materUniversity of Leeds, University of London
Professioneducator, writer
WebsiteFay Chung Blog

Fay King Chung is a Zimbabwean politician and educator. She is a member of Zanu-PF political party. She was Deputy Secretary for Administration in the Ministry of Education from 1980 to 1988 and Minister of Education from 1988 to 1993.


Fay King Chung was born in Southern Rhodesia, the third generation of a Chinese immigrant family that had come from Nanpan Village near Guangzhou. Fay's father was a successful businessman called Chu Yao Chung. Her mother, Nguk Sim Lee, was a Chinese-trained nurse who emigrated to Rhodesia to get married. She died whilst giving birth when Fay Chung was only three years old. Fay and her two sisters were raised at their grandfather and grandmother's.

Fay Chung attended the Indian and Asian primary school called Louis Mountbatten, then Founders High School as a border.

Chung later trained as an educator at the University of Rhodesia and in 1968 went on to earn her post-graduate degree in education and a masters in philosophy in English literature at the University of Leeds. Most recently, Chung earned a BA in economics from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies.

Early Political Career

In the 1960s, Chung taught underprivileged students in one of the largest Rhodesian townships in Gwelo (Gweru) and in the early 70s became a lecturer in the Department of Education at the University of Zambia. In Zambia she became a vocal supporter of the African nationalist movement. Eventually, in 1973 Chung joined the liberation movement Zimbabwe African National Union. In ZANU she was in the Information and Media Department; and latter became responsible for implementing the movement's teacher training and curriculum development in refugee camps.

Political career after independence

Chung co-founded ZIMFEP, an NGO that combined education with agricultural production theory to assist war veterans and their families and was subsequently appointed Deputy Minister of Administration of the Ministry of Education at Zimbabwe's independence in 1980.

Chung has said when she came to Parliament in August 1987 she (and Byron Hove) opposed a bill on procedures that the country takes before going to war in which the president could individually declare war but the bill sailed through. She has said the law eventually paved way for Zimbabwe's involvement in the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo.[1]

In 1988, Chung was appointed Minister of Education by President Robert Mugabe. During her tenure at the Ministry of Education, Chung developed and implemented a nationwide primary and secondary education program. She held the post until 1993 after she resigned after disagreeing with the government.

After Chung joined the UN in 1998 and worked to replicate the Zimbabwean education platform in developing countries around the world as Chief of the Education Cluster at UNICEF in New York, only returning to Africa in 2003 to retire.

Opposition to Zanu-PF

Chung returned to active politics in 2008 when she declared her support for Simba Makoni's Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn party and stood as an independent candidate for Senator of the Hatfield and Waterfalls constituency on 29 March. She lost the election to Zanu-PF's Rutendo Chikukwal garnering 2,238 votes.

Readmittance Into Zanu-PF

Fay Chung was readmitted into Zanu-PF on 14 July 2021.[2]


In 2006 she authored her memoirs called Re-Living the Second Chimurenga: Memories of the Liberation Struggle for Zimbabwe. In the book Chung described the exploitation of female fighters by male superiors. Chung wrote that commanders such as Josiah Tongogara “demanded the sexual services of some of the young women”.[3]

In 2015 she wrote the book Zimbabwe Looking East, in which said it was "totally unsound to expect development to come from the East or from the West. Development will come from internal drivers". She said Zimbabwe had to regard China not as a source but as a model for its own economic turnaround.


  • Chung has a daughter with Rugare Gumbo called Chipo. Chipo Chung is an accomplished actor who has featured in a number of globally acclaimed movies.
  • Chung is a member of the board of trustees of the Women's University in Africa which she helped co-found in 2002.


  1. Fay Chung takes government to task, The Zimbabwe Times , Published:10 December 2007 , Retrieved: 28 Aug 2016
  2. Chipanga bounces back, The Herald, Published: July 15, 2021, Retrieved: July 15, 2021
  3. Chamunorwa Mufaro, Sunday Mail, Thank You For Starting a Gender Conversation! , Her Zimbabwe, Published: 25 Aug 2016, Retrieved: 28 Aug 2016