Dr Jasper Chimedza is a healthcare practitioner, specialising as a Ear, Nose & Throat Surgeon (ENT), in Harare, Zimbabwe. He was appointed Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Child Care on 3 August 2020 by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.[1] He is the Director Health Service at Zimbabwe Defence Forces Headquarters holding the rank of Air Commodore, a position he has held since 2010.

Background

He is the son of the late James Chimedza.

Education

Chimedza studied Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery Degrees at the University of Zimbabwe before his attestation into the Air Force of Zimbabwe in January 1996.

Career

On completion of Basic Officers' Military Course at Buffalo Range Airport in Chiredzi, he was promoted to the Rank of Flight Lieutenant and posted to Thornhill Air Force Base as medical officer. In 1998, Air Commodore Jasper Chimedza was promoted to the Rank of Squadron Leader and posted to Manyame Air Force Base as Senior Medical Officer. Thereafter, he was appointed Director Medical Service at Air Force Headquarters and promoted to the Rank of Wing Commander.

He has been appointed as permanent secretary for the Ministry of Health and Child Care replacing Dr Agnes Mahomva, who was appointed Chief Co-ordinator of the National Response Team to the Covid-19 pandemic in the Office of the President and Cabinet in May 2020.[2]

Mnangagwa Relations

Poisoning

Dr Jasper Chimedza played a pivotal role in diagnosing that President Emmerson Mnangagwa was poisoned during the so called Meet the people rallies organised by the former First lady Grace Mugabe. He recommended the President to seek further medical attention in South Africa.[3]

Dismissal as VP

When the then Vice President, Emmerson Mnangagwa was served with a letter of dismissal in 2017 he was visibly shocked and anxious, hurriedly cleared his office before leaving. Soon after he also went on to clear his official residence in Borrowdale. As a consequence of the dismissal, Mnangagwa suffered oesophagitis and gastritis, conditions which are stress-induced. Sources said army structures then moved in to assist him to leave the country under the guise of going to seek medical treatment in Johannesburg, South Africa.

“A senior army commander called Dr Jasper Chimedza, a military doctor in private practice, was asked to write a letter for Mnangagwa to seek medical attention in South Africa as a way of facilitating his emergency exit,” another source said. “While those close to Mnangagwa said he was indeed stressed and sick, it also emerged that it was part of his escape plan. The leaked medical note was organised through army structures.”[4]

References

  1. [1], Health Times, Published: 3 August, 2020, Accessed: 3 August, 2020
  2. [2], The Herald, Published: 3 August, 2020, Accessed: 3 August, 2020
  3. Bernard Mutambudzi, [3], Harare Post, Published: 24 October, 2018, Accessed: 3 August, 2020
  4. Bernard Mpofu/Elias Mambo, [4], Zimbabwe Independent, Published: 10 November, 2017, Accessed: 3 August, 2020