BULAWAYO A LIVING HERITAGE
On Thursday the 27th of April 2017, a City tour was conducted by the Amakhosi Cultural tour in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality and industry as well as the Japan International co-operation Agents (JICA).
This event coincided with the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) and from it, a selected number of exhibitors took part and among them was a Solusi University representative. The aim of the tour was to administer community based tourism in the country.
The Amakhosi public relations officer who also was the tour guide for the day, Mr. Gordon Chimombe a vibrant and eloquent speaker explained to the exhibitors that the tour was about telling the Bulawayo story from the Historical monuments that still exist in the City.
“The City of Bulawayo is located on an area selected by King Lobengula, the last of the local Matebele Kings, for his personal Kraal, and Government House now stands on the actual site.”
“The name Bulawayo does not mean ‘the place of slaughter’ as it is often said. The name, originally called KoBulawayo, is generally interpreted as ‘I am he who is persecuted and rejected.’ This refers to Lobengula’s personal suffering during the civic conflict that accompanied his ascent to the throne,” said Mr. Gordon.
Inside the City Council Hall is the court of arms of the Bulawayo city drawn on the floor in the middle of the buildings. On the walls are picture of the mayors and all the officials that were involved with the daily business of the city. There is also a huge portrait with the image of King Lobengula and his chiefs in a meeting. According to the narration of Mr. Chimbombe, chiefs sat in a semi-circle around the King who sat on a leopard skin. Mr Chimombe stressed that even today the sitting format exist.
“The council members when having a meeting, their chairs are arranged in a semi-circle and the chairperson sits in the middle and beneath the chair is a leopard skin. This shows that Bulawayo treasures its history.”
The next stop was by the Central Post Office Building and the Mr. Chimombe spoke about the strong hand made sand stone walls which are still strong even now.
“Our parents made them with their own hands, [see] how marvellous it is. Inside are memorial plaques with names of Rhodesian war veterans who fell during the Second World War.”
How interesting it is to know that our country also took part in this event. Tribute is given to the great warriors for sacrificing their lives for the freedom of others.
Other places that were toured that day were Amakhosi Cultural centre where a number of arts activities take place such as traditional dance, drama, soccer and music. This centre trains a lot of young stars. It helps them follow their dreams and excel in them. Examples successful people who passed by Amakhosi are people like Peter Ndlovu one of the best football players in Zimbabwe, the late musician Beata Mangete and Iyasa club to mention just but a few.
Bulawayo plays a very big role to Solusi University. The city of Kings and Queens provides goods and services to Solusi. To add to that, the greater part of the students enrolled at Solusi University also come from the city of Bulawayo and most importantly, the Solusi physical address, 50km West of Bulawayo, is also derived from the City of Kings and Queens.