All roads lead to the National Sports Stadium today for the country’s 39th Independence Day main celebrations where President Mnangagwa is expected to deliver the keynote independence address.
This year’s celebrations are running under the theme: “Zimbabwe @39 — Embracing Devolution for Vision 2030.”
Invitations have already been sent to embassies, ministers, political party leaders and other dignitaries.
In other provinces, Ministers of State, provincial and district administrators, who spoke to The Herald yesterday, said all was set for Independence Day celebrations.
Minister of State for Harare Metropolitan Provincial Affairs Oliver Chidawu urged Zimbabweans from all walks of life to throng the giant stadium, saying buses have been provided at the usual pick up points.
“It is time for our independence, let us celebrate together as the people of Harare. Our celebrations will be at the National Sports Stadium on April 18, 2019. Let us come in our numbers. The buses will pick up people at the usual pick up points from 6 o’clock in the morning. We have 50 buses for Harare. We are also urging those who can assist with their own transport to help carry people to the stadium,” he said.
“Let us celebrate in peace and harmony. Let us observe the protocols and dignity that are associated with the celebrations. Members of the public should not leave the stadium before His Excellency has finished presenting his independence message.”
In Masvingo, it is all systems go for the celebrations that will be held throughout the province with main celebrations set for the provincial capital where Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Cde Ezra Chadzamira will officiate.
By yesterday afternoon preparations had been completed at all centres where the festivities will be held.
Provincial administrator Mr Fungai Mbetsa said they expect a capacity crowd attend.
“We are done with the preparations and have mobilised more than $10 000 for the event,” said Mr Mbetsa.
He said the venue was ready to host the event with members of the uniformed forces having perfected their drills in readiness for today.
In Bikita the district administrator Mr Bernard Hadzirabwi, who will lead the celebrations said they expect a capacity crowd to converge at Bikita Training Centre at Nyika Growth point for the festivities.
He said everything was in place for the celebrations. Chiredzi Acting District Adminstrator Ms Memory Dhliwayo said the main celebrations will be held at Tshovani Stadium and called on people from all walks of life to attend.
Celebrations will be also held in Chivi, Zaka,Mwenezi and Gutu and Masvingo districts which received a share of game meat and other donations to feed hundreds of people expected to grace the Independence festivities.
Mashonaland Central was by yesterday putting final touches to preparations at Chipadze Stadium where the celebration will be held.
A sizeable number of Bindura residents gathered at the stadium yesterday to watch the uniformed forced performing their drills. They said they could not wait for the festivities today.
Acting provincial administrator Mr Richard Chipfuva, who visited the stadium, confirmed that everything is in place for the big day.
“This year’s celebration are special in the sense that it is the first anniversary in the new dispensation and for us here in Mash Central we are privileged to have a female Minister of State who is also new to the task,” said Mr Chipfuva.
The Minister of State Senator Monica Mavhunga also participated in the rehearsals. The province has mobilised over $8 000 for the event.
“We are going to slaughter four beasts to feed our guest and participants. We have mobilised local lorries and the national command centre has availed a bus that we will use to ferry people from neighbouring villages Trojan, Batanai and Menhenga.
“Transport will start picking people at Manhenga growth point, Trojan then Batanai.”
Final preparations were also in full swing at Chinhoyi Stadium where the provincial celebrations for Mashonaland West province will be held.
Members of the uniformed forces conducted their final rehearsals at the stadium yesterday afternoon.
The rehearsals attracted scores of people who were taking pictures and videos.
Provincial administrator Mrs Cecilia Chitiyo urged people to come in their thousands to celebrate the country’s Independence from colonial rule.
“We are ready to go as everything is now in place. We have raised and mobilised enough to see the function through. Independence celebrations are on course and there are no challenges that have been encountered so far,” she said.
Celebrations are also expected at various centres in the province’s seven districts led by district administrators.
In Manicaland celebrations are expected to start at 8am today with the Minister of State Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba expected to read the presidential speech at 10 am.
Provincial administrator Mr Edgars Seenza said this year’s celebrations would be graced by a delegation from Mozambique led by the Governor for Manica Province.
Thousands of people from across the province are set to converge at the stadium where the uniformed forces usually spice up the event with various displays.
In Mashonaland East, the main celebrations will be at Rudhaka Stadium.
Mashonaland East provincial administrator Mr Tavabarira Kutamahufa said the province had raised over $30 000 for the celebrations.
In Midlands, Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Larry Mavima said the organising committee had set a target of $40 000 towards hosting a successful event at Mkoba Stadium in Gweru.