Thousands mark Uhuru

Part of the capacity crowd that thronged the National Sports Stadium for celebrations to mark Zimbabwe’s 37th Independence anniversary in Harare yesterday. — (Picture by Wilson Kakurira)

Part of the capacity crowd that thronged the National Sports Stadium for celebrations to mark Zimbabwe’s 37th Independence anniversary in Harare yesterday. — (Picture by Wilson Kakurira)

Herald Reporters —
Hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans countrywide yesterday gathered at different centres to celebrate 37 years of Independence, while President Mugabe presided over the main event at the National Sports Stadium in Harare.

In Harare, Cabinet ministers and foreign diplomats attended the celebrations marked by entertainment from members of the Defence Forces, drum majorettes, top musicians and a scintillating soccer match between Dynamos and Highlanders.

The celebrations were replicated in other provinces and districts where Provincial ministers and senior civil servants read President Mugabe’s speech.

Play the video below for President Mugabe’s speech

In Chinhoyi (Mashonaland West), thousands of people gathered at Chinhoyi Stadium to mark the country’s 37th Independence anniversary.

Celebrations were also held at district centres throughout the province.

Minister of State for Mashonaland West Provincial Affairs Faber Chidarikire inspected a four-detachment parade mounted by security forces before reading the President’s speech.

The crowd was entertained by displays from security forces, drum majorettes and an all-night musical gala featuring musicians from the province, including Preacherman and Attack Force Jazz band.

In Masvingo, thousands of people packed Mucheke Stadium for the celebrations.

The day was marked by various entertainment activities, including displays by uniformed forces.

Proceedings started with a parade comprising members of the army, police and prisons marching from Chikato Police Station around 9am to Mucheke accompanied by the army band.

People lined the streets to witness the colourful parade.

Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs Senator Shuvai Mahofa presided over the celebrations and read the Presidential speech.

The celebrations continued with performances by Mutimurefu Dance Group and Great Zimbabwe University students.

A soccer match between Christian College and Tami-Tami Football Club brought the curtain down on a fun-filled day.

In Manicaland, over 20 000 people packed Sakubva Stadium for the celebrations.

Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs Cde Mandi Chimene read President Mugabe’s speech.

A uniformed forces’ procession added glamour to the event.

A musical gala was held on Independence eve with an array of artistes taking turns to entertain hundreds of people.

A Mozambican delegation led by Governor for Manica Province Mr Alberto Ricardo Mondlane as well as Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development Professor Francis Gudyanga and service chiefs were among notable people who were present.

It was jubilation at Chipadze Stadium, Bindura (Mashonaland Central) as masses of people gathered to celebrate this year’s 37th Independence.

Embattled provincial chairperson Dickson Mafiosi sat in the crowd to avoid embarrassment.

Provincial War Veterans chairperson Cde Sam Parirenyatwa said Mafiosi was advised not to join the high table to avoid causing disorder.

“War veterans did not want to see him join other delegates at the podium and we advised him against it for the sake of smooth sailing of the event,” said Cde Parirenyatwa.

“War Vets threatened to manhandle him off the podium.”

Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Advocate Martin Dinha read the President’s speech.

Among the delegates were service chiefs, the Mayor for Bindura Councillor Innocent Zvigumbu, Senator Monica Mavhunga (Zanu-PF), Chief Negomo, acting provincial chairperson Kazembe Kazembe.

The situation was the same in Mashonaland Central where the Provincial Minister Cde Ambros Mutinhiri read the President’s speech in Marondera.

Minister of State for Bulawayo Province Cde Eunice Nomthandazo Moyo inspected a guard of honour before reading the President’s speech to an overflowing White City stadium.

Residents continued to flock in as proceedings went on.

Members of the Zimbabwe National Army, Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services provided entertainment.

Police officers had a torrid time controlling the crowds, which included hundreds of children from different parts of Bulawayo.

In Matabeleland South, hundreds of people converged at Phelandaba Stadium in Gwanda filing the venue to capacity.

By 8 am the stadium had been filled to capacity by people mostly from Gwanda and surrounding areas.

Services chiefs, Zanu PF provincial members and the Guest of Honour, the Minister of Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage, Cde Abednigo Ncube, were among the dignitaries at the event.

Cde Ncube read the President’s speech.

Drills by the armed forces stole the day with scintillating performances.

Arts groups from Gwanda did not disappoint as they also left the crowd clamouring for more, with Nduna Malaba Junior, popularly known as Ndux Malax Jr, stealing the hearts of many.

In Matabeleland North, hundreds of people thronged Somhlolo Stadium in Lupane to celebrate the 37th independence anniversary.

The event started shortly after 12 pm following the arrival of service chiefs and Minister Matabeleland North, Cde Cain Mathema.

Cde Mathema, who was the guest of honour, inspected the guard of honour mounted by the Zimbabwe National Army, Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services and the police before he read the President’s speech.

The event was attended by Macro Economic Planning and Investment Promotion Minister Obert Mpofu, the Deputy Minister of Media, Information, Broadcasting Services Cde Thokozile Mathuthu, Lupane West MP Cde Martin Khumalo and her counterpart from Tsholotsho South Cde Zenzo Sibanda, Chief Mabhikwa, Chief Nekatambe and Zanu-PF Matabeleland North provincial chairperson, Cde Richard Moyo.

This year’s celebrations were held under the theme “Zimbabwe @37: Embracing Ease of Doing Business for Socio-economic Development”.

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  • Tarubva

    Looks very much like an MDC-T rally, a sea of red!

  • Mujokochera Wamujokochera

    I hear many war veterans saying the “revolution” has been hijacked. These are people who were all part of that revolution and risked life and limb for our freedom. Freedom from the brutal, murderous, racist Smith regime. Freedom to freely choose who protects and guarantees that freedom. The freedom to hire and sack governments through free and fair elections. Freedom from intimidation and harassment. The freedom to share the national cake. As well as freedom to speak one’s mind without fear of being labelled “mutengesi.”. Can we honestly say we are enjoying these ideals now? I don’t think so. No wonder why some ex-combatants feel used. As for me, I am deeply Zanu, very deeply Zanu, the true original Zanu. No one can deny me that and no one can expel me. I belong to the original Zanu whose ideals were total freedom for the people. I do not see that Zanu anymore. “Servants of the peple” are now masters of them. What I see around me are looters, oppressors and thieves in Zanu skin, pretty much wolves in sheep skin. On the 18th of April 1980 some of us jumped, danced, toyi toyid like mad and celebrated with massive joy. But 37 years later where are we? I don’t want to hear the sanctions song please, thank you. I am fed up with it. So are other Zimbabweans. It is pure discord. Ask Cuba, Iran or North Korea. Zanu woyeeeeeeee!!

    • succuba

      You have pretty much described the book… Animal Farm

  • aussiemigrant

    Cannot be Uhuru, this publication does not know what the word means , zanupf and bob do not deserve such a mantle

  • Moe_Scyslack2

    Independence indeed. 37yrs later we have no currency of our own. We are using goats to pay fees. What’s there to celebrate? Only zanu morons will tell you you are living in heaven when you are living in hell.

  • Gudo

    I am glad we have settled that now at least i understand. When i go to the polls in 2018 dressed in rags with a pot belly from hunger i will realize who to blame.

  • Inquisitive

    Do sanctions also apply to intelligence and common sense?

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    I never attended nor fled UZ. I went to LSE after the close of our armed struggle. Yes I got a British Council grant from the funds colonially stolen from our country. In a war situation, if you are forced to use your enemy`s weapon , its not improper to use. How we fight the sanctions is not informed by what other countries did. Our circumstances dictate how we fight. We dont need US official permission to dollarize as we did. While you raise that , the US never raised a finger. I dont grow tobacco on my A1 plot , but maize , soya and sugar beans. Dont delve into issues beyond your understanding!

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    KKKKKKKKkkkkkkk!

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    Why cant you unite with us in fighting sanctions imposed because of our legitimate land reform? Your MDCT party supports sanctions . Your MDCT leader was reported on CNN TV some years back receiving funds from a white farmer in Banket. What that farmer said while Tsvangirai was smiling accompanied by Kwinje, is the basis of us saying your MDCT party is a bunch of sellouts and stooges of the West. The CNNTV video is there. You try to distort issues hoping to make political capital in vain. If the people are not happy with ZANU PF ,that should be shown at elections, not in your pro Western regime change media propaganda.

    • succuba

      Are you not embarrassed by you lack of knowledge?

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    I am not a Zimpaper employee.

  • succuba

    Have you read the book… what’s your take?

  • succuba

    You have become the court jester… kikikiki…

    Anyone that confuses sanctions with ZDERA is an uneducated buffoon…

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    My political sound or tone is situational. It is informed by politics not academic atmosphere. When Ndabaningi Sithole joined politics and made political comments did he cease to be a man of the cloth to you? Why should I desist from calling sellouts or stooges by their proper true appellations? Why should I use euphemism in describing those against the consolidation of our democracy by black empowerment? I have never defended any weaknesses in our government. I have consistently voiced against sanctions, which you stooges support. ARE SANCTIONS NOT FACTUALLY THERE? How do you want me to engage fools who argue that sanctions are non existent ? Ah warasika Mushsarukwa! Nxaa!