Ignatius Chombo

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Ignatius Chombo
Ignatius Chombo, Government Ministers, ZANU-PF
Ignatius Chombo
BornIgnatius Morgan Chombo
(1952-08-01) August 1, 1952 (age 71)
OccupationPolitician, Businessman
Known forBeing a Cabinet Minister

Dr. Ignatius Chombo is a Zimbabwean politician and a former member of the ruling Zanu-PF party. He is also the former Minister of Finance and Economic Development.

On 14 November 2017, after the military took over control of the country, Chombo was reportedly arrested by the Zimbabwe Defence Forces. As he was being arrested there was apparently an exchange of gunfire between his guards and the members of the military. Pictures of his bullet-riddled home were shared online.

The Zanu-PF Central Committee met in Special Session at the Party Headquarters in Harare on the 19th of November 2017 in terms of Article 7 Section 37(7) of the Party’s Constitution and Ignatius Chombo among other top officials was expelled from the party.[1].Ignatius Chombo was expelled as the (Zvimba North) legislator in November 2017.

Personal Details

Born: 1 August 1952 in Marondera District. His father was Enock Taderera Chiminya Chombo and the mother was Seviria Tugwete. The father was born in Nyandoro Village in Mahusekwa, Marondera District in 1918. The mother was born in 1930 under Chief Mutekedza, Chivhu District.

The father trained as a farmer in Chimbwanda East African Purchase Area from 1950-52 and qualified as a master farmer. The qualification enabled him to acquired a farm in Chitomborwizi African Purchase Area around end of 1952. He lived as a farmer for the rest of his life at Farm 221 until his death in 2000. His mother died in December 1980. He is the oldest child in a family of 6, 2 boys and 4 girls.

Marriage: Twice, to Rachel Vazhure and Marian Chombo (nee Mhloyi), respectively. Lastly married to Bessie Muzvidziwa.
Chombo has four sons: Enock Taderera (dob 1984), Nimrod (dob 1982), Ignatius Jnr (dob 1990) and Tafadzwa (dob 1994).
Totem: Chombo is of the Nondo-Mwendamberi (not to be mistaken for Shava-Mwendamberi) totem whose Chiefdom is of Chirau in today's Zvimba District in Mashonaland West. The Chirau Chiefdom is in between Magonde Chiefdom and the Zvimba Chiefdom from whom the former President Mugabe was.

School / Education

Primary: Matoranjera St. Linus School, Chitomborwizi African Purchase Area, run by the Marist Brothers headquartered at Kutama College. Primary School (Sub A, B, Standard 1-6) at 1958-65. Secondary: Junior Certificate at Kutama College (1966-67).
Teaching Certificate, Kutama College (1968-70).
GCE “O” and “A” Level (1971-75) through private studies while teaching upper primary school (Grade 6 and 7) at St. Peters School in Zhombe and at Golden Valley Mine School in Kadoma in Midlands Province. Then taught Mathematics and English at Lobaste Youth Training Centre in Botswana for the period 1975-78.
Tertiary: BSc. Special Education. Peabody College for Teachers for Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Texas, USA (1981). Emphasis on delivery of Instruction, Classroom Management, Teaching/Instructional Methodology, Educational Psychology, Principles and Practices of Education.
MSc. Special Education. Peabody College for Teachers for Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Texas, USA (1981). Emphasis on Psychometric Assessment, Testing, Lesson Planning, Supervision and Management of Instructional Packages, Teacher Education, Evaluation and Curriculum Development.
PhD Adult/Continuing Education (major), Higher Education Administration (minor), Texas Women’s University, Denton USA (1987). Emphasis on Principles and Practices of Adult Education, Continuing Professional Education, Lifelong Learning, Programme Planning and Evaluation, Human Resources and Organizational Development, Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs.


Moved to Botswana as a refugee. To teaching post for Mathematics and English at Lobaste Youth Training Centre in Botswana for the period 1975-78. ZANU District Secretary for Welfare. Got a party scholarship to go and study education administration in the USA. While in the USA, he was the Chairperson of the party members in Nashville, Tennessee, and led the fundraising efforts for ZANU.

Returned in 1988, and later became Chairperson of Zanu PF UZ District while a lecturer.
Governor and Resident Minister for Mashonaland West Province (1995-1996).

In the 2000 Elections, (see A History of Zimbabwean Elections) Zvimba North returned to Parliament:

In the 2013 Elections, (see A History of Zimbabwean Elections) Zvimba North returned to Parliament:

  • Ignatius Chombo of Zanu PF with 12 633 votes or 72.50 percent,
  • Marian Chombo, Independent, with 3 577 votes or 20.53 percent,
  • Abigail Sauti of MDC–T with 969 votes or 5.56 percent,
  • Stewart Chapola of MDC–N with 245 votes or 1.41 percent.

Total 17 424 votes

Minister of Higher Education (1996-2000). Responsible for coordinating higher and tertiary education, and policy planning, develop policies and programmes for human capital through tertiary education for the country’s transformational needs, coordinating and regulating vocational, teacher and university education through the provision of relevant and responsive curricula.

Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing (2000-2015). Responsible for guiding and coordinating policy in promoting local governance, provision of orderly and coordinated special development (which was strongly violated at Porta Farm), provision of professional, technical, construction and maintenance services in property development and facilitating the provision of affordable and functional residential accommodation. He was very involved in Porta Farm.

Minister of Home Affairs 2015-2017. He was responsible for guiding policy and overseeing matters involving the Zimbabwe Republic Police, National Registry, Immigration, Board of Censors and Lotteries and Gaming Board.

Minister of Finance and Economic Development (2017), taking over from Patrick Chinamasa. Responsibilities: Managing government financial assets, proposing economic and financial policy, coordinate and supervise these actions as provided by the law as well as preparing annual fiscal budgets and issue adequate regulations for execution.

Positions Held

Taught upper primary school (Grade 6 and 7) at St. Peters School in Zhombe and at Golden Valley Mine School in Kadoma in Midlands Province. Then taught Mathematics and English at Lobaste Youth Training Centre in Botswana for the period 1975-78. Received Zanu PF scholarship in 1978 to study education administration in the USA.
University of Zimbabwe Lecturer (Department of Adult Education) (1988-1994).
University of Zimbabwe Chairman of the Adult Education Department (1992-1994).
Member of the House of Assembly (parliament) (1995-2017) for Zvimba North Constituency switched with Swithun Mombeshora who became the Governor for Mashonaland West.

Political History

University of Zimbabwe Chairman of the Adult Education Department (1992-1994).
Zanu PF member of the National Consultative Committee for Harare Province.
Zanu PF Central Committee for Mashonaland West, at the same time he became the Governor.
Zanu PF Member of the Politburo as Deputy Secretary for Lands (1995-2005), deputising Enos Chikowore.
Zanu PF Member of the Politburo as Secretary for Lands (2005-2013), after taking over from the late Enos Chikowore.
Zanu PF Member of the Politburo as Secretary for Administration (2013-2017). Responsible for; coordinating all party departments, resource allocation, supervision and formulating agendas for meetings in consultation with the President of Zanu PF.


Involvement in Corruption

Chombo was reported to have been dragged before the courts many times facing corruption charges. In 2013, he allegedly acquired and sold council stands in Harare.[2]In the same year, he allegedly used his ministerial position to allocate a peri-urban farm to his personal lawyer, Wilson Manase.[3]


Chombo was also implicated in a scandal which involved other prominent figures such as former vice president Joice Mujuru and former deputy minister of Information and Publicity, Bright Matonga. Matonga a former CEO of Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (ZUPCO) was said to have benefited from an underhand deal in which he got US $3,000 per bus bought by the parastatal. It is alleged that Chombo and company solicited a bribe of about US $85,000 from a local bus supplier.

Harare Town Clerk and Land Deals

Chombo was heavily criticized after he quashed the suspension of Harare Town Clerk Tendai Mahachi, in 2013, standing against the public fight for accountability and transparency. [4] Harare Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni had suspended Mahachi for three months as he was allegedly involved in the Salarygate scandal.

When a probe team of Harare City Councillors, produced a report implicating Chombo and businessman Philip Chiyangwa of illegally acquiring council properties at dirt cheap prices the police refused to investigate the matter. It was reported that the councillors were arrested, and journalists who reported the matter arrested too at the instruction of Chiyangwa. [5]

Farm Mechanisation Scheme

In July 2020, Ignatius Chombo was listed, in the BSR of 18 July 2020, as a beneficiary in the 2007 RBZ Farm Mechanisation Scheme, as a result of the Fast Track Land Reform Programme.

The data is analysed by recipients origin:.

  • Mashonaland provinces had the most beneficiaries, both in terms of numbers and value.

Mashonaland East got US$47,5 million,
Mashonaland West US$44,7 million
Mashonaland Central had US$34,2 million.

  • Two Matebeleland provinces had a combined total of US$13,9 million.
  • Masvingo US$26,4 million,
  • Manicaland US$18 million
  • Midlands US$14 million.

Ignatius Chombo is listed under the thematic group “Politicians”. According to the list, he has accumulated a debt of US$248,601.00. [6]

Expulsion from the party

After the Zanu PF Central Committee met in Special Session at the Party Headquarters in Harare on the 19 November 2017 in terms of Article 7 Section 37(7) of the Party’s Constitution. The meeting having been duly convened, noted the incapacitation of the top leadership of the Party to execute their duties as enjoined by the Party’s Constitution. Chombo was among the expelled. press statement announcing Mugabe’s removal, 20 G40 members expelled[7]



In December 2017 when Operation Restore Legacy started, Chombo was arrested by the military. It was believed that Chombo was held at the King George VI Barracks (Now Josiah Magama Tongogara Barracks) [8] Chombo was arrested after the military claimed that he was one of the criminals around the then President Robert Mugabe who needed to be brought to justice for bringing suffering to Zimbabweans through acts of corruption.

Chombo faced 3 counts dating from 20 years before. On the first count, Chombo was accused of forging documents that included a lease to acquire Subdivisions “K” Portion of Nthaba portion of Glen Lorne from City of Harare where he is said to have signed and manufactured a fraudulent lease agreement on 1 January 1997. The city of Harare was said to have been prejudiced of $900 000.

On the second count, criminal abuse of duty by a public officer, Chombo was accused of having received an application from City of Harare for a change of use for an open space in Helensvale into a residential area in September 2006. He allegedly used his Ministerial power as the Local Government Minister to allocate it to a company he co-owns, called Harvest–Net Enterprises. The property was valued at $2 700 000.

On the third count, Chombo was accused of defrauding the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe through the Crops and Livestock Support Facility where he allegedly received $414 billion in Zimbabwean dollars. The court indicated that Chombo did not use the money for the intended purpose, which was buying capital equipment that included a 30 tonne lorry, 30 tonne truck and combine harvester, among others. He was, however, believed to have issued some cheques mainly through CBZ Bank for other purposes. [9]


Ignatius Chombo was arrested again later in December 2017 for criminal abuse of office over the way he handled the Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle programme in Whitecliff farm in Harare. Chombo was arrested while reporting at Marlborough Police Station as part of his bail conditions on other corruption charges he was facing. [10]


In February 2018 whilst on bail, Chombo was again charged with criminal abuse of office charge after he allegedly demanded 25% shares in a fish farming company. It was alleged that Chargan Vithal Rama approached Chombo to facilitate title deeds for a Chirundu Fish Farm. It was reported that Chombo demanded 25% for assisting him. Rama then promised to get back to Chombo which he never did and in 2012 Chombo gave an instruction to lease the property to Glory Boost without following proper procedures. [11]


In February 2021, Ignatius Chombo was arrested on charges emanating from his tenure as Minister of Local Government from the year 2000 to 2015. See Ignatius Chombo Arrest (February 2021)

Abuse of Office Charges

On 1 September 2021, a warrant of arrest was issued against Ignatius Chombo. It was cancelled as the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) withdrew charges over his wearing of Zanu PF regalia. Chombo was facing charges of criminal nuisance with three others after they were photographed wearing Zanu PF caps following their expulsion in 2017, days after a military coup that ousted Robert Mugabe. Chombo had been due to attend court on 31 August 2021 but was a no-show. He and his lawyer Tungamirai Muganhiri turned up on 1 September 2021 to argue he was not in wilful default. Prosecutor Malvern Mapako then told the court the state was withdrawing the charges and “will proceed by way of summons.” Magistrate Stanford Mambanje cancelled Chombo’s arrest warrant, as well as that of Mapako.

The NPA had charged Chombo, Kudzanai Chipanga, Innocent Hamandishe and Matthew Mleya for “conniving to wear party regalia emblazoned with President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s initials, although they knew they were no longer members of Zanu PF” between December 8 and 13, 2017. The NPA charged that they took photographs of themselves while wearing the regalia, including hats embroidered with the Zanu PF flag, inscribed “ED” and “Kutonga Kwaro”. The court heard that the quartet then posted the said photographs on social media. According to the prosecution, the Zanu PF leadership saw this as a nuisance.[12]

Loss of Farm

On 15 January 2022, The NewsHawks reported that the government cancelled the 99-year lease for Chombo's Allan Grange Farm in Zvimba. Part of Chombo’s farm was allocated to his former wife Marian, and some unnamed individuals who invaded the land. In a letter dated 21 September 2021 and delivered to Chombo’s lawyers on 10 January 2022, Lands minister Anxious Masuka cited the government’s one man one farm policy, government policy on spousal rights to land upon divorce, and a court order in favour of Marian Chombo as some of the reasons for the lease withdrawal.

Earlier, in 2021, Masuka had written to Chombo, giving a lease cancellation notice, with the intention to allocate part of the farm to Marian Chombo and other settlers. In response to the minister’s proposal, Chombo made reference to a valid 10-year joint venture which had invested more than US$2 million which the ministry had authorised as one of the reasons why it would be difficult to withdraw the lease. The joint venture, which started in 2018 and was scheduled to run until 2028, had resulted in investment in farming equipment such as centre pivots and a new farm manager’s house, among other improvements, resulting in increased production.

Chombo argued that the distribution of assets between him and his former spouse was a prerogative of the courts and not the ministry. He later invited the minister and his officials to the farm, to appreciate the huge investment before making decisions. Chombo also informed the minister that although Allan Grange Farm was 3 000 hectares in extent, only 505 hectares is arable, hence the proposed subdivision would not be of much benefit to the new beneficiaries because the bigger part is covered by a range of mountains. He also argued that the farm was highly productive and should not be considered for repossession, given that there are many idle farms. Despite the submissions, the minister withdrew the lease. He told Chombo that he entered the joint venture without the consent of his ex-wife. Masuka said although the farm was productive, Marian had a right to claim a share. [13]


Chombo was reported to an owner of many businesses around Zimbabwe as well as properties in South Africa. He is believed to own some companies including Dickest and Harmdinger and safari lodges in Chiredzi, Hwange and Magunje. [14]

Extra Marital Affairs and Divorce

Chombo's ex-wife Marian Mhloyi was reported to have accused him of having extra-marital affairs and at one point called him a 'love rat' when he abandoned her in 2005. It was reported that he had been married to Marian since 1993 and left her for a former news anchor Nanette Silukhuni .[15]

It was reported that Chombo had an affair with one Nanette Silukhuni who is a former employee of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation. The alleged affair is said to have come to light when Marian Chombo sued him over the affair claiming a two billion dollar lawsuit for adultery. [16] Nanette Silukhuni was also said to be in the habit of going out with high profile men which included the likes of Roger Boka, Myethi Mpofu among others. It was also alleged that Nanette openly admitted to having been involved with Chombo and being customarily married to him. It was also reported that she professed ignorance of Chombo being married to any other woman, despite the fact that Chombo had been married to Marian since 1993. [16]

When the marriage of 25 years,to Marian Chombo, collapsed and they divorced in 2010, it was made public how much wealth he had accumulated over the years as a politician. Court documents exposed how Chombo had interest in many sectors of the economy. Chombo's property included:

  • 75 residential and commercial stands,
  • 14 houses and 5 flats
  • 3 100 hectare farm in Raffingora.
  • 15 Vehicles
  • Interest in several farms, mines and hunting safari lodges in Hwange, Chiredzi, Magunje and Chirundu
  • Properties in South Africa

In 2014, Chombo was reported to have been in court to settle the ownership of his farm between him and his ex-wife Marian. This is when details emerged that he never paid school fees for his two sons Nimrod and Ignatius since primary school. [17]

Withrawadal Of Corruption Charges

On 30 August 2023, the National Prosecuting Authority withdrew two charges of corruption against Chombo which he was facing before Magistrate Marehwanazvo Gofa.[18]

His three other cases which were before Magistrate Stanford Mambanje, were withdrawn before plea in March 2023.

The charges that were withdrawn on 30 August 2023 were being investigated by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission. All the cases that were being investigated by the Zimbabwe Republic Police had already been withdrawn.


  1. Zanu-PF press statement announcing Mugabe’s removal, 20 G40 members expelled , NAME_OF_PUBLICATION_HERE, Published: 19 November 2017 , Retrieved: 20 November 2017
  2. Chombo’s Corruption Case Resurfaces In Court, Voice Of The People, Published: September 5, Retrieved: July 1, 2014
  3. Leased farm dogs Chombo, Mail and Guardian, Published: May 24, 2013, Retrieved: July 1, 2014
  4. Chombo reinstates Mahachi,DailyNews, Published:2 February 2014, Retrieved: 13 April 2014
  5. Jacob W. Chikuhwa, ZIMBABWE:THE END OF THE FIRST REPUBLIC: The End of the First Republic, Page: 69. Arthur House, 2013.
  6. https://www.bigsr.co.uk/single-post/2020/07/18/BSR-EXCLUSIVE-Beneficiaries-of-the-RBZ-Farm-Mechanisation-Scheme BSR EXCLUSIVE: Beneficiaries of the RBZ Farm Mechanisation Scheme], Big Saturday Read, Published: 18 July 2020 Retrieved: 18 July 2020
  7. Zanu-PF press statement announcing Mugabe’s removal, 20 G40 members expelled , , Published: 19 November 2017 , Retrieved: 20 November 2017
  8. [ http://bulawayo24.com/index-id-news-sc-national-byo-122872.html ], Chombo released by soldiers, arrested by police, Published: 24 November 2017 , Retrieved: 24 November 2017
  9. Chombo charged, reveals ordeal, , Published: 26 November 2017 , Retrieved: 23 February 2018
  10. Chombo arrested again , , Published:14 December 2017 , Retrieved: 23 February 2018
  11. Chombo in court on fresh bribery charge, , Published:17 February 2018 , Retrieved: 23 February 2018
  12. Chombo arrest warrant cancelled as NPA withdraws regalia charges, ZimLive, Published: September 1, 2021, Retrieved: September 2, 2021
  13. OWEN GAGARE, Govt grabs Chombo’s farm, gives to ex-wife, The NewsHawk, Published: January 15, 2022, Retrieved: January 17, 2022
  14. Chombo: Abuse of Power or a Business Genius?, 3rdliberation, Retrieved: July 1, 2014
  15. Chombo a love rat, says wife, New Zimbabwe, Published: December 11, 2009, Retrieved: July 1, 2014
  16. 16.0 16.1 Chombo's mistress and her famous conquests, NewZimbabwe.com, Published: December 11, 2009, Retrieved: January 5, 2015
  17. Secrets out in nasty Chombo ex-wife farm fight, New Zimbabwe, Published:2 March 2014, Retrieved: 13 April 2014
  18. Prosper Dembedza, Ex-Local Government Minister Ignatius Chombo finally free, The Herald, Published: 30 August 2023, Retrieved: 30 August 2023

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