Diana Nherera and Tafadzwa Ndhlovu—
Children from all provinces in the country yesterday attended a Children’s Party held yesterday at the City Sports Centre in Harare ahead of the 35th independence anniversary being marked today. President Mugabe, First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe, their daughter Bona and her husband Simba Chikore also attended the party.
Also present at the party were the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Dr Lazarus Dokora, Environment, Water and Climate Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, Deputy Chief Secretary in the Office of the President and Cabinet Dr Ray Ndhlukula and Minister of State for Provincial Affairs for Harare Cde Miriam Chikukwa.
Child president Nhlanhla Moyo and child parliamentarians from all provinces also attended the party.
Speaking at the party, Child president Nhlanhla Moyo acknowledged President Mugabe’s prioritisation of the needs of children, saying young people understood the importance of independence and the sacrifices made by liberation fighters.
“We thank you President Mugabe for the noble idea of spending a day with us as we get the opportunity to celebrate our independence, listening to your wise words to our generation,” he said.
“We understand the importance of education that it helps to improve the economy. On the Zim-Asset document, we understand the importance of science and technology in education and the need to acquire technical skills in order to participate in the value addition and beneficiation of our natural resources for greater economic development.”
Child parliamentarian for Midlands, Getrude Phiri, said Independence Day was a time for Zimbabweans to celebrate their liberation from colonial bondage.
“As we celebrate 35 years of independence, we remember the freedom that we now enjoy,” she said. “We are now being accorded equal opportunities.”
Child parliamentarian for Mashonaland West, who is also the Child Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Godhelp Kaliphile Wasarirevhu applauded Government for playing a prominent role in helping the less privileged school children through the Basic Assistance Education Module (Beam).
Child parliamentarian for Mashonaland Central, Chiedza Moyo said the formation of the Children’s Parliament was a great achievement for Zimbabwe.
Child Minister of State for Bulawayo Metropolitan Ocean Maidza thanked President Mugabe for recognising and empowering young people.
“We want to thank those who fought the liberation struggle, especially President Mugabe, because if it was not for them we would still be under colonial rule and not enjoying the fruits of independence,” he said.
Child parliamentarian for Bulawayo Central Dylan Fisher hailed President Mugabe’s initiatives in the education sector, saying he is an icon and idol for all African children.
Other school children attending the party said independence was a time to look back at how the country gained its freedom.
Allan Masuwa from Kwekwe High School in Midlands said as a result of independence, Zimbabweans now enjoy peace and freedom. “Independence time helps us to know where we came from,” he said.
Terence Dambaza from Zengeza High 1 in Chitungwiza said independence is a time to celebrate the lives of those who fought for the freedom of the country. “Independence is a time to commemorate those who fought for our freedom and give them respect,” said Dambaza.
Shawn Muzenda from Gutu High School in Masvingo said access to education being enjoyed by young people came as a result of education.
The children were treated to eats and entertainment by Tocky Vibes, groups from different schools and the police band.