At 6am, on a Thursday morning the 2nd of February 1978, a baby boy born of Alice and Sylvanus Chamisa was introduced to the world at the catholic Sillveria Mission in Masvingo. Nelson Chamisa was born and bred, and educated in Masvingo. Upon completion of A-level education, Nelson Chamisa proceeded to tertiary education were he made a mark in student politics when he became active in student leadership and governance by becoming the Student Representative Council President in his first year in 1998.
In the same year Nelson Chamisa was dismissed from college for active participation and leadership in a demonstration against the government. In the same year, Nelson Chamisa was elected the Secretary General of the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) in 1998.
Nelson Chamisa, together with his colleges transformed the administration and politics of student activism by setting up union offices across the whole country and radicalising approach of student representation.
In 2003, Nelson Chamisa became the youngest a member of parliament at the age of 25, breaking new ground in Zimbabwean politics. Nelson Chamisa is the current Kuwadzana East constituency member of parliament; the community has shown their trust in him by re-electing him as their representative.
He also ventured into uncharted territories by becoming the youngest Minister at the inception of the inclusive government in 2009. Nelson Chamisa is the current Minister of ICT.
Nelson Chamisa Full Biography and Profile
Nelson Chamisa is an advocate and politician whose life began in the small town of Masvingo in 1978. As a young man, Nelson began what would become a lifetime journey of servant leadership as a student at Harare Polytechnic and University of Zimbabwe where he was a part of the Student Representative Council at a time when student rights where suppressed.
His defiance to these abuses of power and misgovernment got him dismissed from college but 1998 marked the beginning of an era.
Nelson Chamisa was later elected Secretary General of the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU). Together with his colleagues, they transformed the administration and politics of student activism by setting up union offices across the country thereby radicalising their approach to student representation.
These trenches of student leadership became a foundation that led to Nelson Chamisa becoming Zimbabwe’s youngest Member of Parliament at 25. He later on broke another record by becoming Zimbabwe’s youngest Minister in the very successful Government of National Unity.
Chamisa experienced tremendous political success at Zimbabwe’s main Opposition Party, The Movement for Democratic Change where he rose through the ranks as National Youth Chairperson, Secretary General and Vice President of the Party.
Today, Nelson Chamisa is the President of the MDC, following the tragic passing of his mentor and leader Dr Morgan Richard Tsvangirai.
A devoted husband to Sithokozile and father to their son Ashley, Nelson loves reading in his spare time.
“Knowledge is the beginning of all understanding and I believe to be a good leader, I need to be an understanding man,” Hon Adv Chamisa says. He also holds a Bachelors degree in Business Administration (South Africa), a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Political Science and a Masters in International Relations and Diplomacy (University of Zimbabwe).
Nelson studied Governance and Development studies with Stanford University of California and graduated with a degree in Theology from Living World Bible College in Zimbabwe.
‘Shamelessly staged a coup’
But his critics say the way he took over the leadership of the MDC in February was “unAfrican” as he was jostling for power before Mr Tsvangirai was buried.
He elbowed aside two other party vice-presidents to be appointed leader by the national executive committee.
One of them, Thokozani Khupe, accused him of “shamelessly staging a coup” and she has broken away from the party.
Like many other MDC members, the married father of one has suffered for his opposition to Mr Mugabe.
In 2007, during a crackdown on the opposition, he was on his way to a conference in Europe when he was beaten up by state security agents at the airport, fracturing his skull.
After his four years in the coalition government, many blamed him for the MDC’s defeat in the 2013 election.
He was accused of imposing unknown candidates, and lost his executive position within the party.
But there is no doubting the man’s energy – he fought back and Mr Tsvangirai appointed him as one of his deputies in 2016, a role that should have been voted on by party delegates.
Nkululeko Sibanda, says in the close to 20 years he has known Mr Chamisa, no-one has worked harder.
“He is a man with a sense of purpose who does not give up on his values,” Sibanda said.
In his Twitter page @nelsonchamisa, Nelson Chamisa wrote:
I see a Great Zimbabwe beyond this Zimbabwe ruins. The future has never bn this near.We need to be problem solvers ¬ problem identifiers.
International And Diplomatic Assignments
Represented the country at various international fora: at the AU Summit, International Telecomunications Union in Geneva, ACP-EU in Brussels, Belgium. Participated in the Youth Leadership in USA programme Washington DC.
Awards And Merits
– Received several awards nationally and internationally
– Best student Practice of marketing IMM Southern Africa
– University of Zimbabwe Book prize (twice) Political Science and Intenational Relations
– Victors award 2011 outstanding and exemplary leadership
– Voted Minister of the year 2011
– Voted top 35 of under 35 young people in International Affairs
– Hon Nelson Chamisa is one of the winners of the first bi-annual Top 35 Under 35 Young African Leaders in International Affairs!
– Nelson Chamisa Biography and Profile