OPINION: Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Cancels The Harare International Carnival
The anticipated 2018 edition of the Harare International Carnival has been cancelled by the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA), due to- among other factors- the economic malaise that has struck the country.
Zimbabwe’s economy collapsed in October, after the Minister of Finance and Economic Development Professor Mthuli Ncube introduced the so-called two percent tax under his unpopular blueprint “Transitional Stabilisation Programme” which runs from October 2018 to December 2020.
The new monetary policy has since caused price hikes of basic goods and high inflation, thus ravaging the citizens’ hard earned cash.
In a press release ZTA Head of Corporate Affairs, Godfrey Koti said ZTA had considered deferring the Carnival after wide consultations with its partners.
“The much anticipated annual national event which was pencilled for December 2018 will not be held this year and this decision was not arrived at lightly,” he said.
This was a fatal blow to the already injured Carnival fans as the national annual event faced obstacles since mid-year and ZTA kept postponing it.
It was slated for June this year before the harmonised elections, but it was postponed to October due to competing events such as the Police Commissioner’s Funfair at the time.
“The competing events at this time of the year, careful consideration of the weather conditions that are usually characterised by rainfall and the current prevailing economic climate contributed to getting to this decision,” Koti added.
Again in October, it was moved further and later the organisers with no choice, postponed it when the government imposed a ban on public gatherings due to the cholera epidemic that was claiming lives in Harare at the time.
According to Koti, the decision was made in a bid to make sure that the event is everything it should be, and without adequate resources and a conducive environment, it would be a disservice to the Harare International Carnival Brand and the general populace.
Launched in 2013, The Harare International Carnival celebrates the beauty of Zimbabwean cultural diversity and celebrates its people’s hopes and aspirations, the event ropes in a number of popular artists and dancers from around the world.
Main Image via 263 Chat.