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Mnangagwa headlines Mugabe Day celebrations

by Staff reporter
21 Feb 2022 at 05:27hrs | Views
Youths across the country were getting ready yesterday to travel to Harare for the National Youth Day commemorations today, where guest of honour President Mnangagwa is expected to launch the National Anti-Drug and Substance Abuse Campaign, the focus of this year's youth activities.

Guests are expected to start arriving from 7am before embarking on clean-up activities from 8am, targeting the areas leading to the venue, the Robert Gabriel Mugabe Square.

President Mnangagwa is expected to lead the clean-up exercise at the City Sports Centre, before moving across to the venue around 10am to join others for another clean-up.

Proceedings will then start with a tour of exhibitions at the venue.

Since this is a national occasion, all youths, regardless of political affiliation or any other potential division, are invited to participate.

The National Youth Day public holiday was first set in 2018, but this is the first time that the day has youth events scheduled so that its intention of highlighting and dealing with issues and opportunities affecting youths, can be fully activated.

Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister, Kazembe Kazembe, told The Herald yesterday that all was set for the successful holding of today's National Youth Day activities.

"It's all systems go. All the logistical arrangements are in place," said Minister Kazembe.

"The youth are ready for the day, judging from the overwhelming enquiries from the provinces."

Deputy Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Tino Machakaire, speaking at Rudhaka Stadium on the sidelines of the Zanu-PF Presidential Rally addressed by Vice President Constantino Chiwenga yesterday said that modalities were in place to ensure that those willing to travel to Harare can do so without challenges.

On Friday, Minister Kazembe said the Government had mobilised enough transport to ferry youths from the 10 provinces to attend the key event.

"All youths, regardless of their religion, political affiliation, social status etc, are invited," he said.

The theme for this year's event is "Alleviating substance and drug abuse by the youth".

Drug abuse among youths is on the rise and research shows there is an increase in uptake of dangerous drugs among young people, partly as a result of the growing economy allowing more people to buy drugs.

Minister Kazembe said interventions were being made by the Government and its development partners to alleviate the emerging trend of drug and substance abuse.

"His Excellency (President Mnangagwa) will also take this opportunity to launch the National Anti-Drug and Substance Abuse Campaign.

"The main mantra behind this year's National Youth Day commemoration is to encourage all stakeholders to join hands and advocate or come up with programmes that encourage behavioural change and development among the youth.

"Failure to harness our demographic dividend meant Zimbabwe will not be able to achieve Vision 2030," said Minister Kazembe.

The demographic dividend describes the process where far better health services means that with falling mortality rates among the young and middle-aged, coupled with falling birth rates as families see almost all children survive, there is a far higher percentage of working age people for a couple of generations.

A number of senior Government officials including VP Chiwenga, Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Professor Paul Mavima, Minister of State for Harare Provincial Affairs and Devolution Oliver Chadawu, Deputy Minister Machakaire and Youth Ministry Permanent Secretary, Dr Thokozile Chitepo, are expected to attend.

Child President, Hazel Mandaza, is also expected at the event.

The date was chosen to honour veteran Pan-Africanist and first Prime Minister and first Executive President, the late Robert Gabriel Mugabe.

Source - The Herald
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