Makandiwa buys massive PA system

The system, thought to be the first of its kind in Africa, was supplied by Radio Cine Forniture (RCF), a renowned Italian manufacturer of audio equipment based in the agricultural area of Emilia Romagna, famous for its balsamic vinegars, parma hams and parmesan cheeses.

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Prophet Makandiwa told thousands of congregants in Harare recently, that as he was praying “for this great night”, he “heard a voice” and “the Lord said gather my people on this particular night from every corner and . . . I want you to tell my people that I am going to kill their enemy before the morning.”

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11 festival

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He told his followers that the Lord had told him that “if poverty . . . sickness . . . barrenness . . . lack is your enemy, you shall bury your enemy in the morning!” and that “whatever you have been going through . . . it is coming to an end” as the night gives in to dawn on Saturday 7 April, 2012.

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Considering the numbers who throng UFIC services every Sunday and the precedence set by a previous bumper crowd at last year’s all-night “Angel of Passover” meeting at the same venue, the 60 000-seater stadium has been chosen as the venue for this year’s meeting, not-withstanding the public address system challenges the venue poses to its users.

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It is in view of these challenges and the seriousness of God’s message on the “Judgment Night” that the church has brought in the audio technology to ensure there would not be any sound barriers between Prophet Makandiwa and the multitude of believers who are expected to grace the occasion.

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Prophet Makandiwa and UFIC are understood to have been making preparations for this meeting since August last year when they placed an order with the Italian company for the supply of the sound system.

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So huge is the consignment that it needed two 30-tonne trucks to transport it into the country. 

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The system consists of 40 RCF-TTL55A self-powered speakers with a unit sound output of 3500 watts, 21 RCF-TTL56A low frequency speakers with a unit sound output of 6800 watts, two digital sound mixers, trusses and motorised cranes for its mounting. The 61 speakers have a combined sound output of 282 000 watts.

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The system can be used to address more than 100 000 people in an open space and can also be split into smaller units for small venues and crowds. A 500KVA generator was procured from India to cater for the system’s high appetite for electricity which demands 500amps at the very minimum. The generator-PA system nexus also demands a very expensive cable network to ensure smooth powering of this highly sophisticated machinery.

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The church is also flying a group of sound engineers from Italy which is expected in the country from March 26, 2012 to the 6th of April, 2012 to operate the system during its commissioning. 

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The sophisticated nature of the machinery procured has compelled the church to invest in the training of six sound engineers plus support staff. 

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The church’s sound engineers would, immediately after the “Judgment Night”, be flown to Italy for comprehensive induction courses hence the church would not be able to use the system until its sound engineers are certified competent by the suppliers.

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Mr Lasten Taonezvi, the Head of the Logistics Department in UFIC said, “the PA system is the first of its kind in the country and Africa” hence the RCF engineers insisted on coming to Zimbabwe to assess in loco, the venue and crowds for which the church needed such a system.

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“After we placed an order, the RCF engineers insisted on coming to Zimbabwe to ascertain whether, indeed, we needed such a big and expensive PA system. After assessing the venue and the crowds we attract they then recommended we buy the 61 speaker system that we eventually ordered.

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“At first we needed a 91-piece system but after their recommendations we settled for the 61. The engineers even told us that they were surprised by our order since they have never had such an order from a church organisation,” he explained pointing out that the system is very modern to an extent it comes with some rigging software that outlines how it should be set up at any particular venue.