Tapiwa Mashakada

Tapiwa Maji-Marefu Mashakada is a Zimbabwean who is the former minister of Economic Planning and Investment Promotion during the Government of National Unity from 2009 to 2013. He is a politician, acting MDC-T National Spokesperson and a member of parliament for Hatfield. He is a chief economist, trade and investment facilitation expert.


He was born on 2 January 1968 in Gutu, Masvingo Province. He was part of the members who founded the opposition party MDC. He was the secretary for policy research in the MDC Alliance until he resently decided to join hands with the Thokozani Khupe led MDC-T.


He attended Machitenda Primary School and then moved to Lundi Secondary School. He graduated with BA in Economics, MSc Economics from the University of Zimbabwe and a PhD Economics from Stellenbosch University. Hon Mashakada is also a holder of a diploma in personnel management – 1997 and a certificate in economic policy strategies obtained from Williams College, Massachusetts (USA).[1]


He is an Economist by profession. He is an expert in trade and investment facilitation in frontier markets such as Zimbabwe. He also do political risk analysis and due diligence on ease of doing business in Zimbabwe and SADC.

From 1991 to 1998, Hon. Mashakada was a Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) unionist and helped mobilise thousands of workers against the International Monetary Fund and World Bank – backed infamous Economic Structural Adjustment Programme (ESAP). He did a lot of advocacy work on behalf of the ZCTU on labour and economic rights and was a resource person at the National Working People’s Convention held in Hillside Harare, which led to the formation of the MDC.

The former MDC deputy secretary-general was also involved in consultative processes many years prior to the formation of the MDC. He was co-opted into the Harare provincial executive at the inaugural MDC congress in Chitungwiza in February 2000. In June 2000, he was elected the MP for Hatfield and also in the same year he was elected vice chairman for Harare Province.

In 2005, he was re-elected the MP for Hatfield. In March 2006, he was elected deputy secretary general at the MDC congress held at the City Sports Centre in Harare. He is a former member of the MDC national Standing Committee. From 1991 to 1996, Mashakada was chief economist with the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions. In 1997, he was a designated Agent for the National Employment Council for the Furniture Manufacturing Industry. In 1998, he became the general secretary and chief executive of the National Employment Council for the Engineering and Iron and Steel Industry and Engineering Medical Aid Society respectively. That year he also became a lecturer on labour economics at the University of Zimbabwe. He was also a board member of the Association of Health Care Funders of Zimbabwe (AhfoZ). Together with Hon. Tendai Biti, Hon. Mashakada was one of the brains behind RESTART, the MDC’s economic recovery blueprint.


  1. [1], MDC UK and Ireland - North District, Accessed: 2 November, 2020