Daudi Shushu was born in 1920 at Ilangale Masanza, Magu District in Mwanza Region. He was the third born in a family of five. His eldest brother, the late Zakayo Kabengwe Shushu, was one of the early and great African pastors of Africa Inland Church Tanzania from 1936 to 1992.
Daudi Shushu’s parents were not Christians. As a result, they were upset with him when he accepted Christ and gave him much trouble until he left home and took refuge in the home of Nangi (meaning “Teacher/Evangelist”) Paul Nyagwaswa, whose son Methusellah Paul Nyagwaswa became the second bishop of AICT from 1984 to 1997.
Following the founding of Aggrey Preparatory School (APS dates: 1934-1941) in 1934 by Rev. William L. Jester, Daudi Shushu became one of the first students to join it and he diligently studied for eight years, reaching eighth grade.
In 1942, he married Anne Henry, a nurse at Katunguru dispensary which was, at that time, supervised by the Africa Inland Mission. Their marriage was blessed with several children: Daisy Kabula, Mary-Louse Butogwa, Samuel, Deborah, Betty, Sporah, Ruth, Esther and Phanuel. All of them followed their parents’ examples in serving Christ with their lives.
Later, when the Africa Inland Church decided to re-open the APS with a new name and purpose as Katunguru Christian Training Center, Daudi Shushu was appointed one of the teachers. In 1949, the church sent him to Katoke Teachers’ College in Bukoba for a three year-course. From 1952 to 1953, he joined the Ukiligulu College of Agriculture. A year later, in 1954, he became the Kijima Middle School head teacher and, in 1955, the Africa Inland Church made him school inspector of AICT schools. He held this title until 1962 when he was elected education secretary of the AICT to fill the post left vacant following the absence of Pastor Felton of AIM.
He was one among the first members of the AICT board of trustees, elected by its synod in 1961. When the government of Tanzania instituted the Arusha Declaration, which led to the taking over of all schools under its administration, Daudi Shushu was hired by the government as the district education officer (DEO) for the Maswa District in Shinyanga region.
In 1966, Daudi Shushu, Rev. Merick Mitinje and former bishop Rev. Jeremiah Mulindajulya Kisula were invited to visit Germany to attend organized meetings and conferences. While there, they preached and presented a major report on what the denomination had achieved up to that time. This extraordinary event was the first opportunity AICT top leaders had had to visit their brothers and sisters abroad and to tell them about all that God had been doing in his church in Tanzania.
Daudi Shushu was a man of determination and persistent prayer during difficult times, firm in his undertakings but who also encouraged others in their responsibilities. He would tell his peers, “We ought to phone our Heavenly Master because he has answers to all our needs and requests.”
Daudi Shushu died in 1971 at Kolandoto hospital, which is run by the Africa Inland Church. For several decades, he was survived by his widow Anne who happily cherished her husband’s legacy of a family built on the foundations of God’s Word. She continued to follow her husband’s prayer vigil and told people in conversation, “Prayer never fails.”
A Short History of Africa Inland Church Tanzania (Muhtasari wa Histotia ya Kanisa la AICT) (Inland Publishers: 1977): 18, 24, 32, 35.
Anne Henry, his wife, interview by the author, June 14, 2003, Makongoro, Mwanza.
Writings by Mary Louise Butogwa Kaselelo, Shushu’s daughter, given to the author, July 2, 2003, in Kitangili, Mwanza.
This article, submitted in July 2003, was written by Rev. Joseph N. Gisayi, 2003-2004 Project Luke fellow, a minister in the AICT for the past twenty-four years, as well as a member of the Africa Inland Executive Council and chairperson of the AICT Mission and Evangelism Department. This article was reviewed and approved by AICT bishop Peter Kitula, David N. M. Nghosha, historian of the Africa Inland Church Tanzania and by Stephen Kapongo, coordinator of AICT Department of Mission and Evangelism.