Sandra Ndebele performs at Chinotimba Stadium

Sandra Ndebele performs at Chinotimba Stadium

Simbarashe Mutizwa Bulawayo Bureau
The resort town of Victoria Falls was a hive of activity as scores of people gathered to commemorate President Mugabe’s 91st birthday on Saturday.

The celebrations kicked off on Friday with a children’s party for those who share their birthday with the President.

The party was followed by the main celebrations which ran under the theme: “Celebrating the Birth of Gushungo, the Icon of Zimbabwe’s Revolution and Champion of Youth Empowerment”on Saturday.

Various groups including Botswana’s kwasa queen Slizer had the opportunity to entertain guests at an event held at the Elephant Hills Resort Golf Course.

After the cake was cut, it was time to loosen up and continue with the celebrations at the gala at Chinotimba Stadium.

The gala, held under the theme: “Jive for an icon”, was hosted by comedians Babongile Skhonjwa and Clive Chigubhu as well as talented presenter, Thulani Munyandi.

The comedians made it difficult for revellers to doze as they continuously provided comic relief.

Praise and worship set the pace of the gala with a performance by gospel sensation, Shingisai Suluma who was first on stage.

She performed hits such as “Maitiro Enyu”, “Nanhasi” and “Mwari Anonzwa Minyengetero” among others.

The night however, exposed Zimdancehall acts, Seh Calaz and King Shaddy whose performances left a lot to be desired.

While all artistes performed with live bands, the two acts whose music is mainly computerised had to rely on backtracks, which spoiled their performances as the gala stage apparently had no space for such acts.

Seh Calaz, who is popularly known as Mubhanditi, performed hit tracks “Kwatinobva” and “Mumota Murikubvira” among others. King Shaddy did “Machira Chete” and “Mama”.

He, however, won the crowds support after inviting legislator Joseph Chinotimba to join him and dance along to his “Machira Chete” – a move which sent the crowd went into a frenzy.

Award-winning groups Iyasa and Mokoomba proved their mettle and showed why they had scooped numerous awards after staging well-choreographed flawless acts.

Dance queen Sandra Ndebele and her Intombi Zomqangala band were hits as they left the crowd yearning for more with their electrifying dances.

Dendera maestro Sulumani ‘Sulu’ Chimbetu stole the hearts of many female patrons with his ‘captain’ attire.

Never one to disappoint, Sulu and the Dendera Kings who were also smartly dressed performed both his and his late father’s – Simon’s songs such as “Ndarangarira”, “Sean Timba” and “Tenda” among other hits.

Revellers could not help but join him in song and dance. Tambaoga who has been on a hiatus for the past years was also part of the entertainers.

He kicked off his performance with hit track “Agirimende” and went on to entertain the crowd with his other songs.

The gala indeed left lasting impressions in Victoria Falls and the fans jived for the icon throughout the night.