BY TANAKA MREWA AND LUNGILE NGWENYA
Bulawayo reverberated to a melody of sounds and colourful displays as the city celebrated its 125th anniversary since it was declared a town.
On June 1, Bulawayo turned 125 years since its declaration as a town in 1894 by Leander Starr Jameson and went on to city status in 1943.
The celebrations were being held under the theme #ReimagineByo, and mainly focused on appreciating the development of the city, rejuvenating the city’s identity and fostering unity within the people of Bulawayo.
The celebrations kicked off with a mini carnival and a procession starting at the Inxwala Site and the Railways station.
Various school drum majorettes led by the prisons band and cultural dance groups were part of the carnival showcasing the city`s diverse and rich cultural heritage.
The mayor of Bulawayo His Worship Cllr Solomon Mguni stood at the exact spot where Jameson made the declaration and pronounced that the city had vast opportunities to develop into a world class city.
“I, the mayor of Bulawayo on this day 4th of June 2019, declare that Bulawayo keeps progressing and moving forward in development in line with our motto-Siyephambili,” declared the mayor.
“I declare the city be economically vibrant and have multimillion-dollar businesses. We want our infrastructure to be robust, to have an environment conducive for both business and leisure.”
Cllr Mguni also declared the city has morally sound culture anchored on the people’s integrity, credibility and transparency.
Bulawayo national art gallery director Butholezwe Nyathi said the celebrations were significant as they gave residents an opportunity to unite and celebrate together.
“The city of Bulawayo is the culture capital of Zimbabwe and takes pride in that. Having these public celebrations allows our citizens to participate in the cultural life of the Bulawayo community,” said Nyathi.
Bulawayo councillors Rodney Jele and Mlandu Ncube reiterated that Bulawayo is a city that takes pride in its culture and history.
Cllr Jele said as leaders of communities they thrive to be the leaders in local governance and service delivery nationwide.
The main celebrations held the Large City Hall attracted hundreds of residents and other stakeholders.
Some of the leading artists and music groups such as Nobuntu, Clement Magwaza, Sandra Ndebele, Madlela Sikhobokhobo put up scintillating performances.
Meanwhile, several events have been lined up till the end of
the year as part of the celebrations.