By Albert Masaka/Faraimunashe Chikumbirike
THE ex-wife of the late popular-but-controversial multimillionaire businessman and socialite Genius ‘Ginimbi’ Kadungure, Zodwa Mkandla, has bared all, revealing that her ex-husband was a shrewd businessman who defied the odds to run an international business empire in the energy sector.
The former air hostess, Mkandla last Thursday literally poured out her private life with Ginimbi to ZCN editor Albert Masaka during an exclusive interview held at her plush office in the upmarket suburb of Avondale, Harare.
Mkandla, who is also a successful businesswoman in her own right, disclosed that Ginimbi was a hard worker.
Acccording to Mkandla, Kadungure has a similar poor rural background like her, but the fact that he was not a quitter had worked in his favour for him to amass such wealth.
She added that what had impressed her was that Ginimbi, armed with only one ‘O’ Level pass in Agriculture, did not regard that as a weakness, but employed his more educated friends and associates to run his businesses successfully.
Mkandla also gave an insight to the public into the twist and turns in her relationship with Kadungure pointing out that they were first friends, then lovers, then best friends again.
She added tha they also maintained a reciprocal business relationship that led to them achieving more.
“Like every other person, everyone has a mentor in any business relationship, I was older than Genius, I have been in business for more years than him, so when he was also doing his business we were working together I would assist him when he needed help.
“I would help him when it was going wrong and as young as he was he also would help me when I needed help, so yes businesswise we contributed to each other’s wellbeing to what we are today.
“When I first met him he was starting his business, I have seen him grow from nothing to something, so all the rumours on social media for me are complete lies.
“People who knew Genius who were close to him knew that he worked hard. Genius would not sleep, he would go from country to country trying to make ends meet, trying to join this business and this business differently, I saw him do that, when he was stressed out I was there for him…he was not a quitter anything he wanted he would get.
She revealed that there were two sides of Ginimbi’s character and he was a different person at home — a father-figure to her two children from another man, to the extent that his death had left a big void in their lives.
“Genius was very kind, he had a good heart, he was a very loving person, some even said he was a womaniser, some people said he abused women but to me I never saw that part of him.
“He was very caring, he was always there for me, if I wanted anything he was there for me, my children know they have their biological father but Genius looked after them like his own, even up to now they are really broken that they lost their Dad, they lost their father figure in their lives.
“He was a family man though there were two sides of him, those who know him in the streets knew him as Ginimbi the party animal but we knew Ginimbi the husband we knew Ginimbi as a family man.
“Fine we decided to go our separate ways for personal reasons I cannot disclose but as much as we had gone separate ways we still really were close friends, Genius is someone who loved his friends.”
Zodwa said Ginimbi put his relatives, friends and family first before anything, and while that love also extended to his fans on the controversial social media show like Ginimbi TV, he assured her that it was mere acting, and true to his word, he was a different person at home.
“I remember he had a Ginimbi TV…people loved that, I didn’t like it because of what used to go on that and I said look we have children and what would they say and he said to me Zodwa don’t worry about the social media that we are acting, worry about me when I am at home.
“That was Genius, what he did outside he didn’t bring home…when he came home he was respectful, he was respectful for his partner respectful for his parents respectful to sisters, respectful to everyone in the house, that was Genius.”
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