Sando, Chacha Eliakimu (1940–2014)

By Benjamin Ngalama Biha


Benjamin Ngalama Biha

First Published: December 8, 2022

Chacha Eliakimu Sando was a pastor and administrator in Tanzania.

Early Life and Family

Chacha Eliakimu Sando was born May 30, 1940, in Nyamombara area, Mangucha Village, Tarime district, Mara Region, in Tanzania.1 His father was Samwel Sando Mahanga, and his mother was Rhoda Waisiku. Chacha Eliakimu Sando was the first born of eight siblings. He was born in the Abhairege clan of the Kuria tribe.2 Sando grew up in Mangucha village, Tarime district, Mara Region, Tanzania.

Between the years 1950 and 1956 Sando attended Nyansincha primary school, Kibumayi and Ikizu middle school. In 1956 Sando got baptized while still a student at Ikizu middle school. He attended Bugema Adventist Missionary college in Uganda for his secondary education. He earned a degree in cooperative societies in Germany and a diploma in accounting and auditing. He also earned a diploma in ministerial training.

Sando married Deborah Rhobi Mwita in 1963, in a wedding ceremony at Manguncha village. They were blessed with seven children, of whom five reached adulthood: Chatele Mwita, Anna Maseke, James Mahanga, Jacqueline Gati, and Enoch Marwa.3


Before joining the pastoral ministry, Sando served as a Tanzania National Accountancy Board member. He served as secretary of the Manguncha Cooperative Society, general manager of Tarime Famers Cooperative Union, and manager of the Mara Cooperative Union.4 In 1974 he quit this position and served as a volunteer preacher.5 One leader who served with Sando testified that he had a strong determination and a positive mind to reach his goals, regardless of obstacles in his way. He would walk for many kilometers from his home at Mwanga in Kigoma town to Kigoma Secondary School to teach students Bible knowledge. Among those students was Bernard Mambwe,6 who later joined church service and served as a church leader. In 1976 Sando served as a lay district pastor at Mwanga district, Kigoma, and in 1978 Sando was sent to Munanila to serve as a district pastor.7

From1978 to 1981 Sando pursued ministerial studies at Tanzania Adventist Ministerial College, graduating with a ministerial diploma. From 1981 to 1984 he served as the treasurer of Ikizu seminary and high school. From 1984 to 1986 Sando was served as the first African Business Manager of the Tanzania Union Mission Health department8. The Eastern Africa Division elected him to serve as a staff auditor of the division,9 where he served from 1988 to 2003.

Later Life

Chacha Eliakim Sando retired from active service in 2004, and was appointed to serve as a district pastor of Njiro district up to 2006. He also served as a retired pastor at ICTR Kisongo as a chaplain of prisoners for some years, until he became seriously ill. Chacha Eliakim Sando died September 10, 2014, in Arusha, Tanzania. His last words were, “He will come to claim his own,” in Swahili “Atakuja kuwachukuwa walio wake.” He was buried at Kangariani village, Tarime district, Mara region, Tanzania on September 15, 2014.


Chacha, Ibrahim K. Historia ya WaKuria. Tarime, Mara, Tanzania: Ibrahim Kibure, 2014.

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbooks, 1988 to 2003. Accessed at


  1. Enoch Marwa Sando, the son of Chacha Eliakimu Sando. Interview by author through phone and email, September 2021.

  2. Ibrahim K. Chacha, Historia ya WaKuria (Tarime, Mara, Tanzania: Ibrahim Kibure, 2014), 1-7.

  3. Enoch Marwa Sando, the son of Chacha Eliakimu Sando. Interview by author through phone and email, September 2021.

  4. Mahanga Sando, younger brother of Chacha Eliakim Sando. Interview by author through phone, November 29, 2021.

  5. Ibid.

  6. Bernard SK. Mambwe, former Executive Secretary Tanzania Union Mission, Western Tanzania Conference president. Interview by author on November 29, 2021.

  7. James Mahanga Sando, son of late Chacha Eliakim Sando. Interview with author by phone from Dar Es salaam on December 19, 2021.

  8. James Machage, retired pastor and former Mara Conference president. Interview with author by phone from Kibaha Dar es Salaam, December 17, 2021.

  9. Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1988 to 2003). Accessed at


Biha, Benjamin Ngalama. "Sando, Chacha Eliakimu (1940–2014)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 08, 2022. Accessed February 29, 2024.

Biha, Benjamin Ngalama. "Sando, Chacha Eliakimu (1940–2014)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 08, 2022. Date of access February 29, 2024,

Biha, Benjamin Ngalama (2022, December 08). Sando, Chacha Eliakimu (1940–2014). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved February 29, 2024,