Felex Share Senior Reporter
All is set for the 21st February Movement celebrations in Masvingo on Saturday and Zanu-PF members are displaying “great cohesion” to ensure the event is a resounding success, the revolutionary party’s Secretary for Youth Affairs, Cde Pupurai Togarepi, said yesterday.
The private media has been awash with reports that Zanu-PF members were fighting over the control of the event to mark President Mugabe’s 92nd birthday.
President Mugabe turned 92 on Sunday.
Cde Togarepi yesterday said Masvingo was “ready to fly” and give Zimbabweans a warm reception for this year’s 30th edition of the 21st February Movement celebrations.
The event will be held at the Great Zimbabwe Monuments.
“The Masvingo leadership is very united and the cohesion is unbelievable,” Cde Togarepi said.
“Everything is in place and we are putting final touches on minor areas. You can feel the celebratory mood in Masvingo. The enthusiasm to celebrate the President’s birthday in Masvingo with him cannot be resisted.”
The celebrations will be held under the theme “Youth Celebrating an African Icon Through Enhanced Productivity”, a leitmotif motivated by President Mugabe’s continued fight for freedom and economic emancipation for Africans.
The theme is also informed by President Mugabe’s highly saluted completion of his one-year tenure as AU Chairman last month.
Masvingo provincial administrator Mr Felix Chikovo said the provincial committee had had six preparatory meetings with the seventh one being held today.
“In terms of attendance, we are working with a target of about 50 000 people and we have fundraised in cash and kind,” he said.
“By last Friday we had 53 beasts and our target is 60. We have had more than 300kg of beef and hundreds of kilogrammes of game meat. Donations in kind continue coming and we have teams working on all the pledges made.”
He said fuel and transport requirements had been met.
“In terms of transport we have invited our district administrators to attend tomorrow’s meeting so that they indicate to us the numbers and the pick-up points,” Mr Chikovo said.
“We have also invited for the event our 42 chiefs and their spouses and entertainment will be galore. We have about 20 entertainment groups which are being streamlined to 10. The health side has indicated its readiness while the venue committee is finalising the set-up. We have had wonderful support and co-operation.”
He said the province was also organising a clean-up campaign to be done tomorrow and Friday.
The 21st February Movement celebrations were conceived in 1986 and have become an annual event aimed at ensuring that the youths get inspiration from President Mugabe’s life.
Last year’s celebrations were held in Victoria Falls.