UPDATES BY THEMBINKOSI MANGENA AND WADZANAI MHOMBERA
Live updates end here
14: 42 – President Mnangagwa ends his speech, and we are going to get a vote of thanks from the Zanu PF National Chairperson, Cde Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri.
14:35- SUDDEN REACTION: On hearing the breaking news, scores of women are falling to the ground, wailing to what can be interpreted as a great loss to them.
14:31 – “So it is now up to you to elect another representative during primary elections, who will represent the party in the forthcoming elections,” he added.
14:27 – “The First Lady has asked me to tell you this message. She will now be concentrating of being the mother of the nation, she will be travelling countrywide initiating developmental and empowerment projects. You have not lost because she will continue with all projects she started here,” said Cde Mnangagwa.
14:22:BREAKING NEWS: President Mnangagwa confirms that the First Lady, Cde Auxillia Mnangagwa will be stepping down as the legislator for Chirumhanzu – Zibagwe, so that she concentrates on being the ‘Mother of the Nation.’
14:10 – He says that elections will be held this year around July and calls for people to remain peaceful. “There is no need for Zanu PF to be violent, there is no reason for any other political party to b violent.” President Mnangagwa also promises a free, fair and credible elections, adding that foreign observers are free to come and observe the polls as ‘there is nothing to fear and hide.’
14:09 – I have had the call of the people of Zimbabwe, I share the vision of the people and I am committed to work for the country. I appreciate the realities of our country. Our industries are stagnant, unemployment rate high. Travelling around the country, I am saddened by the poverty in the communities.”
14:03 – The President chronicles his re-engagement journey which took him to Davos, Switzerland, and then emphasises that with Zimbabwe now open for business, corruption must stop.
14:01 – Cde Mnangagwa says he is overwhelmed by the response by Zimbabweans in the diaspora who want to come back and even invest back home. He says a group of Zimbabweans in South Africa have put together US$400 million towards the revival of the National Railways of Zimbabwe.
13:57 – On mining, the President asks the Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Mr Winston Chitando to stand up and he heeps huge praises to him for his efforts to spearhead the revival of the mining sector. He says Zimbabwe will host a mining indaba, which will be attended by the world mining representatives.
13:52 – Cde Mnangagwa notes the new government initiative to establish irrigation schemes in all the country’s districts. The model of the project has already been launched in Guruve’s Siyalima farm. He says the establishment of the greenbelts in the country’s districts as well as the mechanisation of farming activities will ensure food security in the country.
13:45 – The President lauds the command agriculture programme, which he describes as his brainchild. He adds that the government command agriculture programme will be complemented by the presidential inputs, which is funded to the tune of $400m. “We are saying good-bye to drought.”
13:44 – Cde Mnangagwa says after the successful and irreversible land reform programme, the government has appointed a Land Commission to look into the land issue, where some pieces of land can be taken away from those with too big farms and others with more than one farm, so that it will be redistributed to those without land.
13:41 – “No one lives in the past, we live in the present and plan for the future. Now under the new dispensation, we are open for business. For about 18 years, Zimbabwe has been isolated and been under sanctions,” says Cde Mnangagwa, further thanking Zimbabweans for remaining resolute and steadfast during the time of hardships.
13:36 – The President says Zanu PF is the only party that has a track record of fulfilling the wishes of the people. He adds that Zanu PF will continue ruling while other parties are mushrooming, being divided and crumbling.
13:30 – President Mnangagwa says he is in Chirumhanzu at the invitation of the First Lady, noting that it has been long since he last visited the constitution. He says the area has always been a Zanu PF stronghold. He adds that he has worked with the people for a long time, initiating developmental programmes such as building of schools, roads and bridges. He also speaks of the developmental and women empowerment projects in the area.
13:23 – Vice President Mohadi takes to the podium to introduce President Mnangagwa and invite him to address the gathering, and indeed it is now time for the man of the moment.
13:13 – The ZCC provides a musical interlude, with brass instruments sounding the famous ‘Ndire Ndire’ song.
13:07 – Cde McKenzie Ncube invites the legislator for the area, the First Lady, Cde Auxillia Mnangagwa to greet the gathering. She says she has delivered on the request of the constituency to bring the President to the area. She adds that today is not her day but that of the President.
13:02 – Top party and government officials in attendance include Vice President Kembo Mohadi and Cde Oppah Muchinguri Kashiri (Zanu PF National Chairperson).
12:58 – Zanu PF Midlands Provincial Chairperson , Cde McKenzie Ncube introduces delegates to the President.
12:56 – Chief Chirumhanzu and his team lead in the traditional ritual to welcome the President and dedicate the event to the ancestors.
12:55 – After the singing of the National Anthem, school children recite the National Pledge and a representative of the ZCC church gives an opening prayer.
12:44 – President Mnangagwa arrives for home coming rally in Mvuma.
09:44 – People have started arriving but it is raining here in Mvuma.
09:38 The ZEC BVR mop-up exercise ended on the 8th of February but prospective voters can still register at ZEC static centres across the country.
09:36 – This rally comes after President Mnangagwa met the people of Mashonaland Central Province in Guruve and in Shamva on Wednesday where he urged Zimbabweans to register to vote as only those registered under the bio-metric voter registration (BVR) system will be able to vote in this year’s polls.
09:21 – Also, no one would question that the rally is part of galvanising support for Zanu PF in the forthcoming elections which are due in a few months time.
09:17 – The atmosphere tells a script that he has come to meet the people of Midlands, to say ‘Look I am your son, now I have assumed the reins of power, so let’s work together for the good of the country.’
09:15 – It seems to be a home coming rally for the President as it takes place in Chirumhanzu-Zibagwe constituency, which he once represented in Parliament before the First Lady, Cde Mnangagwa took over when the former was elevated to the post of Vice President.
09:14 – President Emmerson Mnangagwa today addresses a rally at Mvuma stadium in the Midlands Province.