Tags: AF | Zimbabwe | Mugabe Birthday

Zimbabweans Mark Mugabe's 92nd Birthday with Celebrations

Saturday, 27 February 2016 07:18 AM

MASVINGO, Zimbabwe (AP) — By bus, truck and on foot, thousands of Zimbabweans wearing the red, black, green and yellow colors of the ruling party made their way to the normally sleepy southeastern city of Masvingo to celebrate President Robert Mugabe's 92nd birthday on Saturday.

Mugabe, who has been in power since 1980, let 92 balloons into the air to mark the start of the celebrations held at the historical Great Zimbabwe monument, about 25 kilometers (15.53 miles) from the Masvingo city center. During the televised event, school children recited poetry praising Mugabe and criticizing western nations. Many supporters wore outfits emblazoned with Mugabe's portrait.

Guests will feast on beef and game meat in what will be a "top shelf celebration," Pupurai Togarepi, one of the organizers, told the state-run Herald newspaper. The event, dubbed the 21st February Movement after Mugabe's actual birthday, has been held since 1986 and is organized by members of the ruling ZANU-PF party's youth wing.

The Zimbabwean president marked his birthday earlier this week in smaller celebrations that included blowing out a multi-tiered cake with gold frosting surrounded by his family and a gala dinner attended the country's elite.

The opposition has criticized the celebrations as insensitive to the many Zimbabweans facing hunger due to drought and a struggling economy. Masvingo province is one of the areas worst hit by a drought that has been declared a disaster.

Mutsaka reported from Harare, Zimbabwe.

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By bus, truck and on foot, thousands of Zimbabweans wearing the red, black, green and yellow colors of the ruling party made their way to the normally sleepy southeastern city of Masvingo to celebrate President Robert Mugabe's 92nd birthday on Saturday.Mugabe, who has been...
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2016-18-27
Saturday, 27 February 2016 07:18 AM
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