By Crisford Chogugudza
VETERAN social worker and educationist, Mrs Violet Matimba passed away on 30th November 2020 in the United Kingdom.
She was 76 and is survived by 4 children and 6 grandchildren.
Matimba died of natural causes which are however not Covid related. She was born Violet Masuku on 3rd June 1944 in Esigodini, south of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
Matimba received her early education at Mabhikwa Primary School in Lupane, Matabeleland North.
She would later receive her undergraduate degree in Social Work from the University of Zimbabwe in 1987 and master’s degree from the prestigious Harvard University in 1991, respectively.
The late educationist started her university teaching career at the School of Social, University of Zimbabwe (UZ) in 1992.
She later emigrated to the UK where she worked in various London Boroughs and departments of Children’s Services in the UK until her retirement in 2014.
Whilst in UK, Matimba helped a lot of Zimbabwe based social workers relocate to the UK to practise social work in the early 2000s.
According to her Australian based son, Nhlanganiso John Matimba, Mrs Matimba also established and developed the curriculum and taught at South East Essex College Department of Social Work during her time in the UK.
At the time of her death, she was reviewing social work publications on a part time basis.
Matimba had a passion for teaching social work and practice, promoting children and women’s rights; she liked gospel music and was an ardent church goer.
Those who knew her well say, ‘’she was amazing and had a formidable intellect’’.
In her, they saw a visionary, a woman with a disciplined mind ready to instil wisdom into many.
Matimba’s passing is undoubtedly a great loss to the social work fraternity in Zimbabwe and the UK.
She was an excellent academic and lecturer who was very popular with her students at School of Social Work of the University of Zimbabwe, where she spent considerable time as a lecturer and warden at Montrose Hostel in Harare.
She contributed immensely towards the curriculum development and teaching standards at the School of Social Work where she taught both undergraduate and postgraduate students.
Matimba’s expert knowledge of social work education and practice was an inspiration to many. Having a Harvard educated lecturer in her mould was a blessing to many students at the University of Zimbabwe. She engendered a true love of social work through her innovative ways of teaching and her high standards and expectations.
In her, high standards, details and focus mattered. A former student described Matimba as ‘’irreplaceable and an inspirational lecturer’’, who was a force for good.
The imprints of her contributions to social work education and practice will endure and resonate more profoundly with the passing of time. Most importantly, her generosity, wisdom and sense of humour made such a huge difference to those who knew her.
Matimba was so much more than an academic and an intellectual. She was a great human being with a magnanimous heart. Her loss has left a gaping hole in the hearts of all who knew her, and she will be sorely missed.
She was not only an academic but a mother and counsellor to many students some of whom experienced social problems and found comfort in her counsel. Dr Ian Ndhlovu, a close family friend, former student and colleague of Matimba described her as, ‘’a dedicated academic, mother and Christian’’.
He added that the social work profession has been robbed of an inspirational individual but was blessed to have had her amongst leading touch bearers.
Finally, it must also be noted that 2020 saw the death of a few outstanding social work practitioners such as Dr Charles Dziro, a former UZ lecturer and former member of the Council for Social Workers and Jackson Nyoni (61), a veteran social worker, community leader and academic based in Bulawayo.
Dr Cris Chogugudza is a social worker, journalist and academic based in England. He can be reached at email@example.com
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Lionel Messi was shown the first red card of his Barcelona career as they were beaten 3-2 by Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Super Cup final on Sunday.
Messi, in his 753rd appearance for Barca, swung at Asier Villalibre in the final seconds of extra time – an incident spotted by the VAR.
Barca led twice through Antoine Griezmann but Oscar de Marcos and Villalibre, in the final minute, scored as Athletic replied each time.
Inaki Williams scored a fine winner.
The game in Seville was set to be remembered as an entertaining encounter – and for Athletic’s second trophy since 1985 – until the late drama.
Messi lashed out at goalscorer Villalibre off the ball in the 120th minute. The referee missed the clash at the time before viewing it on the VAR screen and dismissing Messi.
The 33-year-old had only been sent off twice before, both for Argentina – on his international debut against Hungary in 2005 and in the 2019 Copa America third-place play-off against Chile.
He could now be banned for at least four domestic games, with Super Cup suspensions carrying over to league and cup matches.
After the match Villalibre celebrated by playing the trumpet for his team-mates on the pitch.
Barcelona were seconds away from winning the Super Cup for a 14th time, in what would have been a first trophy under Ronald Koeman’s reign. It would also have been an eighth Super Cup for Messi, in what could be his final season at Barca with his contract coming to an end this summer.
Griezmann put them ahead after Messi’s shot was blocked before De Marcos scored from Williams’ cross moments later.
Athletic’s Raul Garcia had a header disallowed by the VAR and then Griezmann converted from Jordi Alba’s cross.
But in the final minute, substitute Villalibre volleyed home to force extra time. Williams’ excellent winner soon after the restart came as he got the ball on the edge of the box and curled into the top corner.
Athletic, who beat Real Madrid 2-1 in the semi-finals, have beaten Real and Barca in consecutive games for the first time since 1960.
The defeat comes just as Barca – who needed penalties to beat Real Sociedad in the semis – and their captain were finding form. It was a first defeat in 10 games for the Catalan side and it ends Messi’s run of four goals in two games and six in five. – bbc.com
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TWO Australian Open tennis players have tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in the city of Melbourne, amid growing controversy over the event.
A third case involved a “non-playing participant”, according to the state of Victoria’s chief health officer.
Some 1,200 people, including players, staff and officials, have flown into Australia for the tournament, which begins on 8 February.
But a row over quarantine rules has cast a shadow over the upcoming event.
Some players have expressed frustration about being confined to hotel rooms full-time while other rivals are not. And some residents in Melbourne – a city which endured one of the world’s longest lockdowns last year – have their own concerns about the potential Covid risk posed by the tournament.
Positive cases on three flights have forced 72 players into full quarantine, meaning they have to isolate full-time in their hotel room for 14 days instead of being allowed outside to train like other participants.
It has angered some players, and led world number one Novak Djokovic to lobby authorities to relax quarantine rules for players – including shorter periods.
The suggestions earned him criticism from Australian player Nick Kyrgios and were rebuffed by Victoria state authorities who want to keep infections at very low levels. State Premier Daniel Andrews said the measures were necessary to protect the public and tennis stars would get “no special treatment”.
Following that, Kyrgios tweeted a news clip of the saga on Monday night and wrote: “Djokovic is a tool.”
The outspoken Australian, ranked 47th in men’s singles, has previously criticised Djokovic over the coronavirus, after the Serb organised an exhibition event last year in which he and others contracted the virus.
“That’s what happens when you disregard all protocols. THIS IS NOT A JOKE,” Kyrgios wrote at the time. ‘No perspective’
Many connected to the Australian Open have expressed frustration over their forced isolation, most commonly for the disruption to player preparation.
Kyrgios also criticised the girlfriend of fellow Australian player Bernard Tomic after she featured in the same news clip complaining about the hotel food and having to wash her hair by herself.
“[She] obviously has no perspective, ridiculous scenes,” Kyrgios wrote in the same tweet. Vanessa Sierra has since said that her comments were taken out of context and that she had received death threats, after her “I don’t wash my own hair” quote was mocked online.
Kyrgios’ comments have largely been popularly received in Australia, where many have rubbished some players’ attitudes to virus restrictions. – bbc.com
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UFC superstar Conor McGregor makes his first trip to the octagon in a year on Saturday when he takes on American Dustin Poirier in Abu Dhabi.
The Irishman, 32, was last in action when he beat Donald Cerrone inside 40 seconds last January.
The former two-weight world champion announced his retirement in June, saying he was “bored of the game”, but now he’s back – and according to reports from his camp “the Notorious” is more focused than ever.
BBC Sport talks to coach Owen Roddy to find out how has McGregor been preparing, and what the prospects are of a rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov. From PPE back to UFC
McGregor has often been at the centre of controversy for his behaviour but won plaudits for his philanthropic work in 2020.
In March, he pledged to buy over one million euros worth of personal protective equipment for hospitals in Ireland fighting the Covid-19 pandemic, showcasing a far more positive public persona than had been put forth over the previous three years.
Three months later his fans were baffled by his third retirement from the sport in four years. In an interview with ESPN, he explained that his decision to hang up his gloves was born out of frustration at not being able to book a fight.
Despite feeling “shelved” by the UFC top brass, McGregor continued to work out.
He kicked his training into a higher gear a couple of weeks before his rematch with Poirier was announced, moving his entire camp to Lagos in Portugal after the lockdown in Ireland forced the closure of gyms nationwide.
Breaking up the camp for two weeks over Christmas, McGregor stayed on top of his conditioning in a purpose-built facility on his property – including a full-sized octagon – before spending the last two weeks of the camp in Dubai. ‘He’s a much scarier beast now’
Last January, McGregor’s dynamic 40-second stoppage of Cerrone proved that he could get back to peak condition after a long absence from the sport, and that at 32 he still boasts his signature stopping power.
According to his striking coach Roddy – a man who has worked with McGregor since his first days in an MMA gym – the successful outing against “Cowboy” laid the foundation for what would turn out to be a year of preparation for his return.
“The camp just seemed to keep rolling because there was so much talk of him fighting a couple of months after Cerrone, then in the summer and then again in September,” Roddy told BBC Sport.
“He never stopped putting the hours in. He’s a much scarier beast now because he’s been training solidly for a year. He’s been wanting to fight, he hasn’t been able to, and now we get to let him off the leash.”
The Dubliner’s physical condition has been highlighted as the biggest indicator of how seriously he is taking his second date with Poirier.
The first time they met in 2014, McGregor won the contest within two minutes of the opening bell. Now, with the benefit of three years of boxing-focused training, he believes he can finish the job inside 60 seconds. – bbc.com
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By Staff Reporter
SIXTY people died of Covid-19 in a single day as the country sags under the devastating pandemic that has claimed 773 since the first case was confirmed March last year.
According to a Covid-19 update by the health ministry late Monday, there were 689 new cases also recorded in 24 hours.
However, the seven-day rolling average for new cases fell to 799, down from 818 recorded the previous day.
Said the ministry, “All 689 are local cases with 339 of them being from Harare.
“Cumulative cases curve spiking.”
Added the ministry, “National Case fatality Rate now stands at 2.8 % as at 18/1/21.
“Harare reported the highest number of cases today (339)
“60 COVID-19 deaths were reported today. 37 of the deaths occurred at institutional level with 23 at community level.
“All provinces reported cases today.”
- 689 New Cases and 60 Deaths reported in the last 24 hours. (7 day rolling average* for new cases falls to 799 from 818 yesterday).
- All 689 are local cases: 339 cases are from Harare (*Deaths from Harare are for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday)
- 3829 PCR tests done today (Positivity today was 18%)
- 860 new recoveries reported: National Recovery rate stands at 62.3% and Active cases go down to 9747 today.
- As of 18 January 2021, Zimbabwe has now recorded 27892 Cases 17372 recoveries and 773 Deaths.
Although relatively far lower than other world countries that have seen the worst of the monstrous disease, Zimbabwe’s cases are enough to cause panic within a population that has seen near dysfunctional health systems.
The country is halfway into a 30-day national lockdown period prescribed by government to try and disrupt the spread of the disease.
By Alois Vinga
NATIONAL Social Security Authority (NSSA) is set to cede 32.5 % stake in listed roofing and building products manufacturer, Turnall Holdings Limited (THL).
In a cautionary statement, THL urged the shareholders to exercise caution until the transaction is completed.
“The board of directors of Turnall Holdings Limited advises all shareholders that one of the company’s shareholders, National Social Security Authority (NSSA) intends to dispose its 32.5 % shareholding in the business as part of its investments consolidation strategy,” the company said.
The development that may result in a transaction that can have a material impact on the value of the company’s shares.
The board therefore advises shareholders to exercise caution when dealing in their THL shares and to consult their professional advisers before dealing in their shares until such a time the results of the said transaction are known.
“The board advises shareholders that the company’s unaudited financial performance for the year and the company forecasts further improvements in the current year 2021,” added THL.
The authority has been disposing stake in various investment portfolios since last year.
NSSA is set to dispose of its 35.09% stake in Fidelity Life Assurance (FLA) to Zimre Holdings Limited (ZHL).
The acquisition was done through a share swap agreement where NSSA will be issued with 65,14 million authorised but unissued ZHL shares on the basis of one ZHL ordinary share for every 0.59 FLA shares held by NSSA.
Another 37,79% stake in ZB Bank was also disposed to an entity linked to business tycoon and President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s adviser, Kuda Tagwirei.
Key stakeholders like the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) which has a board member representing workers’ interests in NSSA, have since criticised the authority for implementing the decisions without input from key stakeholders.
But NSSA has dismissed such claims arguing that the transactions being undertaken are above board and in line with new investment priorities.