Nicholas Goche

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Nicholas Goche
Nicholas Goche, ZANU-PF Factionalism
Image Via: Herald
BornNicholas Tasunungurwa Goche
(1946-08-01)August 1, 1946
Known forWas once a member of the ZANU-PF party
SuccessorPrisca Mupfumira
Political partyFormer ZANU-PF
Spouse(s)Laura Melisa Ebineng (ex-wife)
ChildrenNicholas Goche Junior (late); Tsungi Goche

Nicholas Tasunungurwa Goche is a Zimbabwean politician and former Minister of the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare. His tenure in government came to an end in December 2014 as part of the 2014 factionalism, as he was accused of plotting to oust the late former President Robert Mugabe.

Personal Details

Born: 1 August 1946. [1]
Marriage: Laura Melisa Ebineng. [2]
Son (Nicholas Goche Junior), passed away in June 2015. [3]


Work History

During his early days, Goche worked for a number of companies in various capacities, including Secretary-General of Rhodesian Explosive and Chemical Workers Union between 1968 and 1970. [1] Before long, Goche left the union and became Assistant personnel officer, payroll employees and welfare. Zimbabwe Phosphate Industries Ltd between 1970 and 1974. Between 1974 and 1977, he worked as a Personnel officer at ZIMPHOS.[1]

Liberation Struggle

At the height of the Second Chimurenga, Goche was one of the cadres who went into exile between 1977 and 1980. [1]


Soon after independence, Goche returned home to work for the new government. He was appointed Senior administrative officer, Zimbabwean Embassy, Washington. He worked in that capacity from 1980 to 1983. In 1984, he was given another state assignment to work as the Under-Secretary, Eastern Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 1984, Goche was the Ambassador of Zimbabwe to Romania and Bulgaria. Between 1987 and 1990, Goche was the Zimbabwean ambassador to China. [1]
Other positions held include;

  1. Deputy Secretary, Political and Economic Affairs, Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1990-91.
  2. Assistant, Embassy in New York, 1991–92
  3. Deputy Secretary for Production, ZANU-PF Mashonaland Central, 1994
  4. Deputy Minister, Foreign Affairs, 1995-2000
  5. Minister of State, National Security, 2000-2005
  6. Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, 2005-2008
  7. Minister of Transport, 2008-2013.
  8. Minister of Public Service, 2013 - December 2014. [1]

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

  • Nicholas Tasunungurwa Goche of Zanu PF with 19 460 votes,
  • Joseph Mashinya of MDC with 5 621 votes.

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

  • Nicholas Goche of Zanu PF with 19 194 votes or 90.95 percent,
  • Isaac Chidavaenzi of MDC–T with 1 909 votes or 9.05 percent,
  • Anderson Matibiri of MDC–N with 0 votes or 0.0 percent,

Total 21 103 votes


Goche was as one of the close loyalists of Robert Mugabe. He was once the head of the Central Intelligence Organisation which is a very influential government department. His appointment to this position shows that he had indeed earned trust and respect not only of the ZANU PF party but also of the president Robert Mugabe.[4]

Spygate and Demotion

Goche was implicated in a spy scandal in which senior intelligence and government officials were accused of selling State secrets to hostile foreign governments. Mugabe's nephew Phillip Chiyangwa was arrested in December 2008 with five others including Zanu PF security officials, diplomats and a banker. Chiyangwa was later freed by a judge who said the state charges against him were "vague and imprecise" and did not warrant his continued detention. Three of Chiyangwa's co-accused pleaded guilty and were given sentences of between five and six years in jail.[5]

Succession Rumours

One of the media houses in Zimbabwe hinted that Goche was one of the likely candidates to succeed Robert Mugabe who has been in office for three decades. It was generally believed that Goche had been brought close by Mugabe in order to groom him for the higher task.[4]

Farm Mechanisation Scheme

In July 2020, Nicholas Goche 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.

Nicholas Goche is listed under the thematic group “Politicians”. According to the list, got a loan of US$305,608.00. [6]

Factionalism in Zanu PF

Reportedly they were two main factions in the party, one led by Vice President Joice Mujuru and another by Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa. The two factions were said to be working to replace Robert Mugabe. The former group, which was also known as the moderates, was purportedly pro-business attempting to push ZANU PF politics to the political centre ground. This was reportedly done to create relations with the international community. Mnangagwa's faction, also known as the 'hardliners', comprised of 'old guard' with members that has dominated Zimbabwe’s political scene since the 1980s. [7] Some of the members allegedly supporting Mnangagwa are Jonathan Moyo and Patrick Chinamasa. Mujuru was reportedly being backed by Didymus Mutasa.[8]

Goche was believed to be one of the key strongholds in the Mujuru faction. He was believed to be working with the Mujuru faction in a bid to remove Mugabe from power in favour of Joice Mujuru. He was also believed of working with other Mujuru loyalists in plotting for a coup against Mugabe.

Assassination Plot

Sate media reported that the Mujuru faction was plotting a coup/ assassination on Robert Mugabe and his close allies. It was believed the Goche was the one who had made contact with possible hit-men from South Africa and Israel to carry out the task. The Herald newspaper claimed that Goche used the cover of a government trip to Europe and made stop-overs in Israel and South Africa where he tried to hire assassins to take out the ageing Zanu PF leader. Goche however denied the charges arguing that he never left the country to make such arrangements.[9]

In November 2014, Goche attended a meeting in Bindura Mashonaland central province where he wanted to submit his application for nomination in to the central committee. He had to flee for dear life after youths aligned to a faction headed by Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa pounced on him, demanding that he be cleared of treason allegations before he could attend any party meetings. Goche was due to attend a provincial co-ordinating committee (PCC) meeting in Bindura yesterday when youths mobbed him, threatening to beat him up if he insisted on attending.[10]

Admission into Hospital

After treason allegations against Goche went viral in the media, the cabinet minister was suddenly reported to have been admitted into hospital. It was however not clear why he was in hospital. Some speculated that Goche was suffering from a serious stress related ailment and he was in the intensive care unit of a local hospital. Some argued that Goche was suffering from hypertension which was undoubtedly triggered by the mounting pressure in the party as well as serous allegations he was facing.


Goche faced humiliation when he was barred from submitting his curriculum vitae for nomination into the ZANU PF politburo. His failure to secure a seat in the party structures made his fall inevitable. Goche could not face the humiliation and he decided to boycott the much publicised ZANU PF 6th Congress held in Harare in December 2014. He joined his fellow comrades such as Joice Mujuru and Didymus Mutasa who also conspicuously boycotted the congress. He was subsequently fired from cabinet by Robert Mugabe.[11]

Expulsion from the Party

Goche was given a five-year suspension from the party. The suspension was announced on 21 May 2015 following a politburo meeting in Harare. This followed earlier revelations that Goche was one of the key architects planning an alleged coup on Robert Mugabe.

Bona Mugabe marriage/divorce

In March 2023, Bona Mugabe filled for divorce from Simba Chikowore. At their marriage on 1 March 2014 at the Blue Roof Mansion in Borrowdale, wedding gifts included:

  • Robert and Grace Mugabe gave US$100 000 and 55 head of cattle.
  • Local mining company gave US$100 000.
  • Equatorial Guinea President and wife, gave US$35 000.
  • Businessman Mr Ihmad Ahmed gave US$50 000.
  • Gabriel Mugabe and wife gave US$25 000, plus 10 head of cattle.
  • Zaoga (FIF) Qatar, (where Mr Chikore is a senior elder), gave US$2 600.
  • Zambian President Mr Michael Sata and his wife Dr Christine Kaseba gave a gift hamper worth about US$4 000.
  • Nicholas Goche, (then Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister) gave US$2 000.
  • Zimbabwe Republic Police represented by then Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri gave US$10 000. [12] [13]

Reinstatement into Zanu-PF

Goche's five-year suspension was lifted at a politburo meeting that was held on 3 August 2016. Sources privy to the politburo proceedings told NewsDay that Goche’s suspension was lifted following his appeal against his sentence even though Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo and party secretary for administration Ignatius Chombo could not be reached to comment.[14]

US$25 000 Land Grab

In July 2021, Nicholas Goche was taken to court on allegations of aiding an Apostolic Faith Mission in Zimbabwe (AFM) ex-pastor Fidelis Muzivi to grab the church’s property.

Muzivi was accused of personalising the US$25 000 stand with Goche’s help. Muzivi was sued together with Goche who allegedly sold the stand to the church through his company Mushayahembe Enterprises.

Bindura Municipality was cited as the third respondent in the matter.

AFM alleged that Muzivi unlawfully changed ownership of the stand after full payment and insisted that the property belonged to him.

The church approached the High Court seeking a declaratory order with ancillary relief. The church wanted the court to determine who the true owner of the stand was and compel Goche to reverse the ownership papers.

AFM said on 19 January 2014 it applied for a church stand to Mushayahembe Enterprises, a company owned by Goche. The application was granted, and a response came through one Manyati of Manyati Enterprises who was an agent for Mushayahembe Enterprises. Muzivi was the pastor and chairperson of the church development at the time the stand was bought by AFM.

In October 2019 Goche's company confirmed that AFM had fully paid for the stand. Soon after receiving the confirmation of full payment, AFM approached the offices of Mushayahembe only to discover that Muzivi had tampered with the file documents.

AFM held a meeting together with Goche and Muzivi on the 17th of June 2021 at Goche’s offices. Muzivi insisted that he was the rightful owner of the stand. As a result, AFM said it was left with no other option than to approach the court so that the rightful owner could be determined.[15]

Arrest and Court Appearance

Former state security minister Nicholas Goche was freed on Z$50,000 bail on Thursday 8 October 2020 after he was charged with stock theft. Goche appeared at the Bindura Magistrates Court following his arrest on Wednesday 7 October 2020. Prosecutors accused Goche of the theft of 22 cattle which had been bought from his farm in 2018. His lawyers insisted the dispute was a civil matter.

It was alleged the former minister sold 40 steers worth US$35,600 to one Honest Mupanedengu of Series Farm in Shamva. Mupanedengu took 22 for slaughter, and wanted to move the remaining 18 to a farm in Chiredzi, which was not possible due to a foot and mouth disease outbreak. It was alleged that when Mupanedengu finally received clearance to move his 18 steers worth US$18,000, he discovered Goche had sold them. Mupanedengu called the Zimbabwe Republic Police. Goche’s lawyers said the dispute was civil and should not have been taken to court as a criminal matter. Political allies of Goche say he has been targeted to stop his supporters from occupying powerful positions during the ongoing Zanu PF District Coordinating Committee elections which are causing tumult in the ruling party.[16]

Nicholas Goche at Bindura Magistrate Court


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 , Nicholas Tasunungurwa Goche, "Africa Confidential", retrieved:19 Nov 2014"
  2. Prosper Dembedza, LATEST: Ex-Minister Goche sued, Herald, Published: 24 Sep 2015, Retrieved: 24 Sep 2015
  3. Funeral brings Gamatox, Weevils together, Newsday, Published: 25 Jun 2015, Retrieved: 24 Sep 2015
  4. 4.0 4.1 D. Mutanga, Nicholas Goche “to replace Mugabe” | OPINION |, "ZimEye", published:9 Sep 2010,retrieved:19 Nov 2014"
  5. , Security Minister Goche demoted over spy ring, "NewZimbabwe", published:11 Dec 2009,retrieved:19 Nov 2014"
  6. BSR EXCLUSIVE: Beneficiaries of the RBZ Farm Mechanisation Scheme], Big Saturday Read, Published: 18 July 2020 Retrieved: 18 July 2020
  7. Editor, [ the ZANU-PF succession: Mugabe’s choice likely to be decisive], 'African Arguments', Published: 7 Jan 2014
  8. Clayton Masekesa, Mujuru will succeed Mugabe — Mutasa, 'The Standard', Published: 12 Apr 2014, Retrieved: 25 Apr 2014
  9. Z.Murwira, Goche Under Fire, "The Herald", published:19 Nov 2014,retrieved:19 Nov 2014"
  10. E. Mushava, Picture: Goche flees for life, "Newsday", published:24 Nov 2014,retrieved:29 Nov 2014"
  11. H. Zharare, President Unveils New Ministers,The Herald, published:12 Dec 2012,retrieved:17 Dec 2014"
  12. Bona Mugabe divorces husband, Chroncle, Published: 7 March 2023, Retrieved: 8 March 2023
  13. [Link_Here Bona Mugabe Files For Divorce From Simba Chikore], Pindula, Published: 7 March 2023, Retrieved: 8 March 2023
  14. Everson Mushava, Goche bounces back, NewsDay, published: August 5, 2016, retrieved: August 5, 2016
  15. Mary Taruvinga, Goche In US$25 000 Land Grabbing Scandal,, Published: July 4, 2021, Retrieved: July 9, 2021
  16. Tony Karombo, [1], ZimLive, Published: 8 October, 2020, Accessed: 8 October, 2020

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