Gertsch mentors budding artisans

He left the then Rhodesia as a seven-year-old in 1965, but Grahame Gertsch remains committed to seeing the country improve economically and hopes to return to his country of birth as an investor one day.

Zimbabwe remains special to me - Gertsch.
Zimbabwe remains special to me – Gertsch.

Born of a British mother and a Swiss father in the then Salisbury, Gertsch is now an advocate and owner of three top-class restaurants here, but has not forgottenhis home. He actively pursues his desire to see the country return to its status as the bread basket of Southern Africa by mentoring migrants and encouraging them to become entrepreneurs.

Two years ago, he took under his wings two budding artisans – Brighton Mahachi from Kadoma and Ephraim Dongo of Mhondoro. Following his training, their partnership has repaired many roads in the neighbouring country, as they prepare themselves for bigger opportunities back home.

Described by Dongo as a man of integrity, Gertsch also does marketing -winning the pair jobs that improve their efficiency and help their business grow.

“I have visited Zimbabwe on many occasions since I left and on each visit, I have made new contacts and friends. That country still holds a special place in my heart. It has huge potential and wealthy resources on which to base future growth. But we cannot do that without trained professionals and businessmen,” said Gertsch.

A practising advocate, Gertsch is also nurturing the business and leadership skills of budding businessman Tonderayi Kunyaye (25).

“I am teaching him business and legal skills, in a bid to foster his entrepreneurial spirit and make it blossom. It is necessary for us to grow a new economy, and we can only do that by involving the young generation.”

“What I will ultimately do there in terms of business will depend on what the people’s needs would be at that time, but lack of political stability is forcing me to put my plans on hold at the moment. I would not mind going back to live and do business in that country in exactly the same way I am doing here.”

“I spent large part of my legal life practising a prosecutor in the magistrates’ courts and supreme courts. I handled cases that varied from rape, theft, robbery, murder and treason. Changing sides to the Bar as an Advocate began a second chapter in my legal career, that of defending offenders,” said the former Dean of faculty of law, who also worked as a Professor of Procedural law and holds a Masters Degree in criminal law.

He says he has learnt a lot from exiled Zimbabwean Human Rights Lawyer, Gabriel Shumba, with whom he shares a common goal of a peaceful and crime-free Zimbabwe.

Gertsch is also chronicling the history of pre-colonial mining. “The knowledge of pre-colonial mining will help develop modern mining. Zimbabweans are a race of miners, with tonnes of gold having been mined by locals before Cecil John Rhodes destroyed that,” he said.

Post published in: News

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