Oliver Munyaradzi

From Pindula

Oliver Musa Munyaradzi was the first African to be a general surgeon in Rhodesia. He became the first African to hold two Fellowship of the Royal Colleges of Surgeons (FRCS) certificates of Glasgow and England.

Background

He was born in 1933 at Morgenster Mission Hospital. He was the first born in a family of two boys and three girls. One of his sisters was a theater nurse in Germany. His brother Ranga was a London University economic graduate who worked for a local bank. The last born Tsungi was the general secretary for the Christian Council of Rhodesia.

Education

He received his early education at Domboramavara near Kwenda and he proceeded to do his higher primary schooling at Kwenda Mission. For Forms 1 to 6 he was at Goromonzi High School. He wanted to do engineering but his parents wanted him to do teaching. Goromonzi's principal Alfred Knottenbelt advised him against taking engineering because there would be very few openings for Africans in the field.

Munyaradzi's parents threw him out of home because he refused to be a teacher. When he was thrown out his principal at Goromonzi, Knottenbelt used his own money to buy him some clothes and help launch him into a medical career. Munyaradzi went to Natal Medical School in Durban, South Africa from 1956 to 1963. After doing his housemanship at Mpilo Hospital he moved to Harare Hospital for 15 months.

While at Harare Hospital he applied for a Beit Trustee Scholarship but was told he could not qualify because of age. He used his own money. In August 1968 he left Rhodesia to enter the Institute of Basic Medical Science at Royal College of Surgeons of England. HE remained there until February 1970.

He obtained the primary part of the Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and proceeded to work at Great Ormond St, London at the Fermont Hospital for sick children.

After the course he was attached to Professor Harold Ellis at Westminster Hospital in London. He went to Glasgow where he was one of the four successful candidates in the Fellowship exam in February 1971. He joined the Cheshire and Wythenshawe Group of Hospitals as a Registrar in General Surgery in May, returning to London to sit for the final Fellowship. He passed the exam.

He joined the Booth Hall Children's Hospital, Manchester as Registrar in General Surgery. He came back to Rhodesia in October 1971 and worked temporarily as hospital medical officer in the casualty department of Harare Hospital until year end. From January 1, 1972 he became senior Registrar in General Surgery. He thus became the first African to hold two FRCS certificates f Glasgow and England.

Career

After completing his studies at Natal Medical School in South Africa, Munyaradzi came back to Rhodesia and did his housemanship at Mpilo Central Hospital before moving to Harare Central Hospital for 15 months.

After he had obtained the primary part of the Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and proceeded to work at Great Ormond St, London at the Fermont Hospital for sick children