ZimbabweHuchi Uncategorized Margaret Dongo Biography: Early Life, Liberation War Participation, Political Career, and Personal Life

Margaret Dongo Biography: Early Life, Liberation War Participation, Political Career, and Personal Life

Margaret Dongo Biography: Early Life, Liberation War Participation, Political Career, and Personal Life post thumbnail image

Margaret Dongo was born on March 14, 1960. At the young age of 15, she left secondary school in 1975 to join the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA) in Mozambique, adopting the name “Tichaona Muhondo”. She admired ZANLA commander Josiah Tongogara for his integrity and commitment to fighting corruption.

Political Career

Dongo co-founded the National Liberation War Veterans Association (NLWVA) to support war veterans who were marginalized. She entered the political arena in 1990 as a Member of Parliament for Harare East, advocating for democracy, human rights, and the rights of disadvantaged groups.

During her tenure with ZANU-PF, Dongo served on various parliamentary committees such as the Public Accounts and Indigenization committees. She also chaired the Local Government portfolio committee, where she promoted transparency and accountability.

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Margaret Dongo-Image Source@Zimprofiles

In the 1990s, while serving on the ZANU-PF Central Committee, Dongo voiced her discontent with the party’s direction, feeling it strayed from the liberation struggle’s principles. This led to her expulsion from ZANU-PF.

Subsequently, she became the first woman to head an opposition party in Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe Union of Democrats (ZUD). Her leadership was a significant milestone for women in Zimbabwean politics.

In the 1995 elections, Dongo contested against ZANU-PF’s Vivian Mwashita. After initially losing by 1,000 votes, she challenged the election results in court, uncovering significant issues with the electoral roll. The court overturned the election, and Dongo won the subsequent rerun with 3,075 votes, continuing her advocacy for human rights and democracy in parliament.

After a decade in parliament, Dongo retired from politics and returned to her rural home in Mhondoro.

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Personal Life

Margaret Dongo is known to keep her personal life private. While not much is known about her dating life, her commitment to self-improvement is clear. She has invested in her education, including earning a master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University.

Dongo has also mentored other female politicians, including Priscilla Misihairambwi and Trudy Stevenson, sharing her experiences and empowering women in politics.

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