Mamvura is well-known for his wood work

2020-01-30 06:00
Philip Mamvura showing off some barstools he is making. Cuthbert Tambo leans on the table behind. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

Philip Mamvura showing off some barstools he is making. Cuthbert Tambo leans on the table behind. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

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Zimbabwean-born carpenter Philip Mamvura is carving out a life for himself under difficult circumstances. Mamvura lives in Samora Machel and is operating his business along Jakes Gerwel Drive.

He started his business in 2016 after struggling to find a job. “I arrived in South Africa in 2013 and at that time I had carpentry certificates from back home. So, when I arrived in the country I worked for another carpentry company in Goodwood, that is where I gained experience,” said Mamvura.

He described wood work as his life. “Wood work is the only thing that I know. I enjoy what I’m doing,” he said.

He mentioned chairs, picnic tables, tables, dog kennels, including cupboards as some of the things that he makes. He said customers are allowed to bring their designs.

Mamvura said starting a business is not child’s play as it comes with a lot of challenges. “Being your own boss, you need to be disciplined and you must be an example to your employees. You can’t come or leave work anytime because you are an owner,” he said.

Mamvura said business is booming in summer because people have money. He said most of his customers are restaurants, taverns, tshisa nyamas, edu-care centres including ordinary people.

“My prices range from R350 to R3 200. The customer pays a deposit upfront,” he said. However, he battles to find sufficient space to store the products.

“I don’t have a safe place to put my stuff because where I’m staying, I’m a tenant. I have to take my stuff out (along Jakes Gerwel Drive) in the morning and take it back in the afternoon. I wish I have a warehouse where people can come and view my work,” he stated adding that he works seven days a week from 08:00 to 17:00. Anyone who wants to order can call him on 062 746 1085.

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