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Zimbabwe minister Shiri, liberation fighter and retired Air Chief Marshall dies

HARARE 28 July (The Southern African Times) – Zimbabwe’s agriculture minister Perrance Shiri, a retired general who helped plot the ouster of Robert Mugabe in a 2017 coup, has died, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said on Wednesday. 

Shiri, who commanded the air force for 25 years until he joined the government in 2017, was admitted to hospital on Tuesday, two government sources said. He died in the early hours of Wednesday. 

“Shiri was a true patriot, who devoted his life to the liberation, independence and service of his country,” Mnangagwa said in a statement. He did not say how Shiri died. 

Former UN Resident Coordinator Mr Bishow Parajuli said he had worked with Minister Shiri on how they could improve the agriculture sector. “I met him many times and discussed way forward in improving agriculture and food security, he was very receptive to many suggestions. Most sincere condolences prayers,” he told Zimbabwe’s state news, The Herald.

Other domestic media said Shiri, 65, succumbed to complications from the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus, which has infected 2,817 and killed 40 in Zimbabwe.

Shiri was the commander of Zimbabwe’s Air Force until the birth of Zimbabwe’s second republic in 2017 in which he joined cabinet as the Minister of Lands and Agriculture.

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