Gwanda Residents Snub Auxilia Mnangagwa
12 May 2019
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Auxillia Mnangagwa (in white cap) takes part in the egg and spoon race during a low key Family Fun Day in Gwanda on Saturday.

Residents of Gwanda Town on Saturday shunned First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa’s so called Family Fun Day held at Pelandaba Stadium in the town.

The hopeless event was a near flop with only a handful of people at the venue some four hours after the scheduled start time as residents in the town went on with their business as usual.

The event was rescued by some few truckloads of elderly people hurriedly picked up from nearby rural communities at the promise of a meal and possible food hampers.

Addressing the small gathering, Mrs Mnangagwa said Family Fun Days are important in creating a healthy nation as people exercise, interact freely and discuss issues that affect them in a relaxed manner.

“It is a preventive method of wadding off disease. I am promoting fitness, wellness and good health which are an enabler for you to function in all other in all other respects. I cannot over emphasise that a healthy nation is a happy nation. I must also stress the importance of keeping our environment clean. The clean-up campaign we did earlier together should be the beginning of a culture of zero tolerance to litter. Let Gwanda residents be known as champions of cleanliness and remember that it all starts from your own households,” she said.

Traditional sports like athletics, netball and football and recreational activities including the blind fold con dash, tsoro, the sack race and the tug of war were some of the activities that were witnessed by the First Lady.

The Family Fun Day, which started off with a clean-up led by the First Lady in the morning, saw an explosion of multi-ethnic language and culture as Matabeleland South went some way in justifying its moniker as the Rainbow Province of Zimbabwe.

Winners of the various activities were rewarded with hampers from the First Lady.

“As you have seen, I have been to every province undertaking a number of charity-oriented initiatives mostly under the banner of my Angel of Hope Foundation. These initiatives help me reach out to members of the society that are not so privileged. I have been to cities, peri-urban and rural areas interacting and lending a hand to fellow Zimbabweans,” she said.

“I am a mother like you, also ambuya and some call even call me gogo. The reason I get into communities is to get personal with you, to get close to you, understanding your needs and helping in the best way I can. Sometimes interventions are by means of donations, scholarships, medical care, while sometimes it’s just being your voice, advocating and conducting awareness campaigns, calling and reminding all respective institutions to play their roles,” she said.

“The Family Fun Day is another interactive opportunity for us to take time from our busy schedules and engage in sporting activities. The day is for the family, especially the girls, mothers, ana gogo kunyanya. It is rare to see women deliberately exercising, when they jog they’re running to the market, when they lift weight it’s usually laundry, fetching water or gardening.

“Today we will be exercising purely for our bodies, minds and souls. You deserve a rest from all the hard work that you do. A special time to get to know each other and share ideas. Men create these platforms for themselves all the time, at bars maboozer playing football and eating out braiing and gotchi gotchi. What about us women? Out platforms for engagement should be broadened, we should create time for ourselves,” she said.

Mrs Mnangagwa was accompanied by the Minister of State for Matabeleland South Provincial Affairs, Abednico Ncube, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Recreation Dr Thokozile Chitepo and the Director General of the Sports and Recreation Prince Mupazvirinho among other dignitaries.