Govt: Independence celebrations to last the whole year. For the main celebrations, it will be the first time the event will be held outside Harare since 1980, with officials also expressing satisfaction over preparations so far. Events to mark the 40th anniversary of Zimbabwe’s Independence will be spread over the whole year to show the importance of the milestone with the main event being held for the first time in Bulawayo next month.
Local Government and Public Works Minister July Moyo told Sunday News on Friday on the sidelines of a tour of renovation works at the Bulawayo magistrates courts that Government wanted the celebrations to be spread throughout the year to indicate the importance of the milestone.
“Yes, I am happy with the work thus far, the team from Bulawayo has been working with the national organising team and I can safely say all is in place for the hosting of these festivities. Of course there are a lot of things which the Bulawayo people want to have as part of the celebrations inclusive of an exhibition (art) and a soccer match to mention but a few and the Information (Publicity and Broadcasting Services) Ministry has a lot of deliverables which they will put out but all the responsible departments are co-ordinating quite well.
The Government has said the celebrations will be all year, so we expect that Bulawayo will be taking the lead to celebrate this huge achievement by the country, so I must assure people of a whole lot of interesting and exciting activities.”
Minister of State for Bulawayo Metropolitan Provincial Affairs, Cde Judith Ncube said all was in place for the city’s hosting of the celebrations. She said it was now upon Zimbabweans from all walks of life to converge on various festivities lined up for the celebrations.
“This country was not liberated by a single person, it was liberated by the people of Zimbabwe regardless of political affiliation, inclusive of the church. During the liberation struggle, one would find church pastors holding prayer sessions for the liberation of the country because prayer was the weapon of choice the pastors knew. Therefore, if one feels they are not part of these celebrations, we need to sit down, talk and reason together. We need to discover more of ourselves so that we move together as people of Zimbabwe,” said Minister Ncube.
She called upon the youth in Bulawayo to actively participate in the celebrations revealing that the celebrations were a complete package where every age group will be catered for.
“The celebrations have been designed in such a way that we would want to incorporate everybody, we will be having a children’s gathering, which will be held at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair, we will also have a Cultural night at the Large City Hall, both on 17 April. We will also be having the main event on the 18th and later on as part of the main celebrations, we will have a football match where Highlanders Football Club will play against either a local or foreign big club. Later in the evening we will have a music gala to accommodate our young people,” said Minister Ncube.
On the state of preparedness, the minister revealed that she was excited that everything was on course.
“I am so happy with the preparations so far for the hosting of the main celebrations. What I would like to do at the moment is just to appeal to the people of Bulawayo and the entire Matabeleland region that we wish to share a slice of the celebrations with our patients at the hospitals. These celebrations are for everyone therefore let us share with everyone, patients, the elderly, orphans and the vulnerable within our society. The celebrations should go beyond the main celebrations, we must also donate the little we get to charity,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has confirmed the availing of Barbourfields Stadium for free for the celebrations.
Responding to a request from Minister Ncube’s office, BCC Director of Housing and Community Services, Mr Dictor Khumalo confirmed that the local authority will, as per every national celebrations, avail the use of the stadium free of charge.
Source – The Sunday News
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