Francis Nhema
Chenaimoyo Dunstan Francis Nhema
BornChenaimoyo Dunstan Francis Nhema
(1959-04-17)April 17, 1959
EducationUniversity of Zimbabwe, Strathylde University in Scotland, Pennislyvania State University in USA
  • Member of Parliament:Shurugwi North.
  • Minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment
  • Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management
  • Assistant Chief of Protocol and State Occasions in the Office of the President
  • Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism
Years active1980-2013
Home townMidlands Province
Political partyZimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front
Spouse(s)was once married to Loiuse Nkomo
ChildrenHe has two children
Parent(s)Elina Nhema

Francis Nhema is a Zimbabwean politician and former Minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment. He is a member of the Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU PF). He held several party and government offices before his was relieved of his duties in December 2014 on allegations of taking part in a plot to remove president Robert Mugabe from power.


Nhema was born on the 17 April 1959 as Chenaimoyo Dunstan Francis Nhema in Shurugwi.[1] He was married to the iconic Joshua Nkomo's second daughter, Louise for 20 years.[2] The couple however divorced in 2013. His mother Elina Nhema died in February 2014. [3]

Academic Qualifications

  1. Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree 1980 (University of Zimbabwe UZ)
  2. Diploma in Housing 1983-1987 (Pennsylvania State University in the United States of America USA)
  3. Master of Science Degree 1983-1987 (Strathylde University in Scotland)
  4. Doctor of Philosophy Degree 2000-2013 ( UZ) and the title of his thesis is, Human Wildlife Conflict in the South-East Low veld of Zimbabwe[1]

Political Career

Nhema became politically active in 1975. When the country got its independence in 1980, Nhema was a member of ZANU PF in Harare Province and then later on in the Midlands Province.[1] In 1981, he joined the Ministry of Information and Tourism. In 1982, he was an attaché in London, New York, Washington DC and Ottawa in USA. [1] He was in the USA up to 1987. In 1988, he was appointed to be an assistant secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, a post he retained until 1989. In 1990, he was the Assistant Chief of Protocol and State Occasions in the President's Office. [1] Four years later, Nhema was appointed to be the Deputy Secretary for Economic Affairs and in 1997, he was the Secretary for Information.

In 2000, he was elected to be the Shurugwi Member of Parliament (MP). In 2003, he was the ZANU PF Treasurer for the Midlands Province. The following year, he clinched a seat in the ZANU PF's Central Committee. In 2007, he was appointed head of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Nhema's greatest achievement was in 2009 when he became Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management during the Government of National Unity (GNU). In September 2013, Nhema was appointed as the Minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment, a move which was welcomed by members of the public who were disgruntled with the services that were rendered to them by Cde Saviour Kasukuwere who was the then Minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment during the era of the GNU. Many youths across the political divide hailed the minister for his soft approach compared to his predecessor.[4]

Allegations of fanning Factionalism

Nhema was also part of the top ZANU PF officials who were fingered for engaging in factional tendencies in which he was alleged to have been aligned to the Mujuru faction. Along with other politicians alleged to have been fanning factionalism, Nhema was also facing mounting criticism for having undermined the government efforts towards the policy of indigenisation.

Dismissal From Cabinet

Nhema was dismissed from cabinet in December 2014 after the ZANU PF congress which was meant to remove all elements harbouring factionalism in the party. He was dismissed from office together with other ministers including vice president Joice Mujuru. He was replaced by the former governor for Manicaland province Christopher Mushowe. [5]


  1. Manager of the Year (1996)
  2. Communicator of the Year (1997)
  3. The Order of the Golden Ark Award (2001)
  4. Silver Jubilee Tourism First Achiever Award for Outstanding contribution to the Development of Tourism in Zimbabwe
  5. Silver Jubilee Tourism Merit Award [1]


He showed his versatility when he wrote 12 songs for Pax Gomo who is a gospel artist in 2012.[6] Nhema was also a trustee of the Zimbabwe Health Care Trust, the 21st February Movement Trust, Zimbabwe Children's Rehabilitation Trust, Relationship Service Trust, the Joshua Nkomo Trust and the Shurugwi Development Trust. [1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Minister's Profile, Ministry of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment, published:2013,retrieved:22 January 2015"
  2. Nhema, Nkomo's daughter divorce Daily News, Published: January 11, 2013, Retrieved: June 27, 2014
  3. Albert Masaka, Mbuya Nhema: unsung hero of football Daily News, Published: February 14, 2014, Retrieved: june 27, 2014
  4. Nhema on right track Daily News, Published: October 15, 2013, Retrieved: June 27, 2014
  5. H. Zharare, President Unveils New Ministers,The Herald, published:12 Dec 2012,retrieved:17 Dec 2014"
  6. Jeffrey Moyo, Nhema turns to music, The Zimbabwean Published: October 24, 2012