Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a writer, commentator, social justice activist and journalist from Kwekwe, Zimbabwe. [1][2]



Tendai Ruben Mbofana (born 12 July 1973) is a Zimbabwean Journalist and social justice advocate. He was born in the native township of Torwood, Redcliff, in what was then known as Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). Mbofana is the son of Elias Japhet George Mbofana, a teacher, and Anastasia Takazvida Mbofana, a state certified nurse.[3] He is the only child in his family.[4]

Mbofana's early life was marked by challenges and adversity. When he was born, he did not breathe for some time, leading to concerns about his health and development. Despite these initial difficulties, he grew up to be a healthy young boy. However, he faced bullying[5][6] during his early school years and experienced sexual abuse at the hands of a girl[7] who lived with his family.

In 1982, after Zimbabwe gained political independence, Mbofana's family moved to the predominantly white suburb of Redcliff. It was during this time that he witnessed some of the most traumatic events of his life, including the Gukurahundi massacres in 1984.[8] These horrific acts, which targeted Ndebele-speaking people, had a profound impact on Mbofana and ignited a spirit of fighting injustices within him.

Education played a significant role in Mbofana's life and helped shape his passion for writing and social justice. As a result of his family's move to Redcliff, where English was the predominant language, Mbofana's poor mastery of the language became a cause for concern for his teachers. Encouraged by his parents, he immersed himself in reading English books and honed his skills in writing and speaking the language.

In his early high school years at Kwekwe High School, Mbofana started producing a handwritten newspaper for his fellow classmates. At the age of 16, he began contributing news articles to a weekly publication called The Midlands Observer. By the time he was in the Lower Sixth form in 1991, he had become a regular columnist for The Midweek News, where he boldly spoke out against the injustices and suffering faced by ordinary Zimbabweans.[9]

One of the pivotal moments in Mbofana's writing career occurred in 1991 when he witnessed the devastating effects of Zimbabwe's Economic Structural Adjustment Program (ESAP) on his community. This program, designed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led to massive retrenchments and widespread poverty. Inspired by the plight of his community, Mbofana started his social justice columns, which he named 'The Un-Oppressed Mind'.

His writing caught the attention of ruling ZANU PF party leaders, who issued him threats to silence his voice. However, Mbofana remained undeterred and continued to write. Throughout his career, he has declined offers to join various political parties.

Mbofana's dedication to fighting corruption and injustice has led to numerous achievements and recognition. He exposed corruption in his own school, Kwekwe High School, which resulted in backlash from the school's headmaster but only strengthened his resolve. He actively engaged in community service and helped less advantaged students by providing them with financial support for school fees, uniforms, and other learning materials.

After studying journalism , Mbofana ventured into the field of media and worked for several local publications as an editor, including The Redcliff News and The Oracle. In 2008, he immigrated to South Africa due to the deteriorating economic conditions in Zimbabwe. During his time in South Africa , he worked as an administrator for an NGO called Botshabelo, which assisted disadvantaged communities. However, he was eventually fired from his job due to his social justice writings, which were perceived as anti-government.[10]

When Zimbabwe's economy began to recover in 2009 following the formation of a unity government, Mbofana decided to return home. In 2011, he married Tinta Mzemba, a local Redcliff resident whom he had known for many years. Since his return, Mbofana has worked as a communications advisor for the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) and has continued to write articles on social justice issues for local Zimbabwean and international publications.

Mbofana's work has gained him significant influence in Zimbabwe, and he has been invited to comment and analyze various issues on media platforms such as Al Jazeera,[11] Voice of America (VOA),[12][13] Deutsche Welle (DW), and more. He has also been regularly invited to speak at conferences and other events. Additionally, Mbofana has volunteered with Zimbabwe Network for Social Justice (ZimJustice), an initiative for activists advocating against injustices in Zimbabwe.


  1. ^ "Illegal water trade springs up as taps run dry in Zimbabwe". The Observers – France 24. January 9, 2017. Retrieved March 7, 2024.
  2. ^ "Court Convicts, Fines Zimbabwe Opposition Figure". www.voaafrica.com. Retrieved March 7, 2024.
  3. ^ "As long as parents lead their children away from their cultural identity we will forever have delinquent youth". www.thezimbabwean.co. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  4. ^ "Biography". TENDAI RUBEN MBOFANA - THE UN-OPPRESSED MIND!. October 3, 2023. Retrieved April 12, 2024.
  5. ^ Mbofana, Tendai Ruben. "I was bullied at school". Bulawayo24.com.
  6. ^ ZimSitRep_M (June 8, 2021). "Isn't it interesting that those used by ZANU PF to do its dirty murderous work always seem to meet an unenviable tragic end?". Zimbabwe Situation. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  7. ^ "Ignoring the boy-child perpetuates violence against women". TENDAI RUBEN MBOFANA - THE UN-OPPRESSED MIND!. February 17, 2024. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  8. ^ "Those who perpetrated Gukurahundi the ones who stirred up and incited hatred in Zimbabwe". www.thezimbabwean.co. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  9. ^ Mbofana, Tendai Ruben (February 16, 2023). "Intolerance in Zimbabwe the greatest threat to national peace and stability". Nehanda Radio. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  10. ^ Mbofana, Tendai Ruben (September 18, 2023). "Tendai Ruben Mbofana: Cowering to a dictator only makes him more brazen!". Nehanda Radio. Retrieved April 14, 2024.
  11. ^ What's at stake in Zimbabwe's upcoming elections? | Inside Story. Retrieved April 12, 2024 – via www.youtube.com.
  12. ^ "Zimbabwe's Opposition CCC Biti Leaves Politics". www.voaafrica.com. Retrieved April 12, 2024.
  13. ^ "Hurukuro naVaTendai Ruben Mbofana". Voice of America (in Shona). November 16, 2019. Retrieved April 12, 2024.


  1. ^ "Biography". TENDAI RUBEN MBOFANA – THE UN-OPPRESSED MIND!. October 3, 2023. Retrieved March 9, 2024.