ZANU PF youths have blamed government red tape for delaying their proposal to have President Robert Mugabe’s birthday, February 21, declared a public holiday.
BY OBEY MANAYITI
Addressing journalists in the capital yesterday, the party’s national youth secretary, Pupurai Togarepi said they would go ahead and celebrate the “Robert Mugabe Day” this year and lobby for people to commemorate the day like any other public holiday.
Mugabe turns 92 on February 21, with party youths organising an $800 000 bash for him in Masvingo province.
“We have started the procedures to have the day declared a public holiday. We wrote a letter last year to the Justice ministry, but you know because of government bureaucracy, we are still waiting for them (to respond). However, this year, we will go ahead and celebrate the icon. We will urge people not to go to work and youths will have real celebrations on that day,” Togarepi said.
However, opposition parties and political analysts have condemned the call for a Mugabe holiday and plans by the ruling party to hold a mega bash for him at a time the majority of the population are facing severe food shortages.
The opposition MDC-T said the money being mobilised for Mugabe’s birthday celebrations should be diverted to feed hundreds of thousands of families in drought-stricken provinces.