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Zimbabwe Defence Forces Day celebrations - LIVE update

by Staff reporter
15 August 2017 | 1457 Views
President Mugabe addresses thousands who attended the ZDF Day celebrations at the National Sports Stadium in Harare on Tuesday afternoon.

The Zimbabwe Defence Forces Day main commemorations are underway this afternoon at the National Sports Stadium in Harare. We give you updates of this important event.

Thousands of Zimbabweans are gathered at the National Sports Stadium to celebrate the Defence Forces Day.1051 - The Zimbabwe Defense Forces (ZDF) in their current form were established in 1980, soon after independence. The ZDF comprise of the Zimbabwe National Army and the Air Force of Zimbabwe.




Thousands of Zimbabweans gathered at the National Sports Stadium to celebrate the Defence Forces Day, Monday Tuesday 15 August 2017.

The day was set aside to commemorate the role played by the armed forces in defending the territorial integrity of the country. President Mugabe is set to address the main gathering here at National Sports Stadium but festivities are held throughout the country, and will be presided over by Provincial Affairs ministers. The president will deliver his remarks followed by a colorful military parade.


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14:05 - President Mugabe leaves the stadium but the celebrations continue and there shall be a football match between Highlanders Football Club and ZDF select team

13:23 - Macheso's performance has been cut short as paratroopers prepare to land. The landing of para troopers marks the beginning of ZDF mass displays. There are 10 paratroopers flying above the stadium.



13:10 - As the arena clears, Sungura musician Alick Macheso prepares to dazzle the crowd with his moving hits.

13:00 -The parade has sought permission to dismiss and it has been granted. They are now marching off the arena.

12:54 - For his support, he was deported to Ireland and returned in 1980 where he developed social services in the health, farming and education sectors.

12:52 - Father Slevin passed on on 1 May 2017. According to the citation, he was an Irish Missionary who against the wishes of the Rhodesian Government supported the cause of Zimbabwe's liberation struggle.

12:51 - His Excellency, in his capacity as the grandmaster of the Royal Order of Munhumutapa is now conferring the award posthumously. The award is accompanied by a monetary present of $US 100 000.

Fr. Paschal Slevin in 1985 when he was stationed in Hwedza - Pic courtesy of Frank Hand. · 15 August 2017




12:46 - Minister of Defence Dr Sydney Sekeramayi reads the request for the Royal Order of the Munhumutapa award for the late Father Paschal Slevin The Royal Order of Munhumutapa is the highest award that Zimbabwe can bestow to foreigners who have made immense contribution to Zimbabwe. The Royal Order of Munhumutapa has been awarded to more than six individuals. Tanzania is the only nation that has two recipients of the award whose grandmaster is the Commander in Chief of the Defence Forces, President Mugabe.

In love of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces.

12: 34 - He has also commended the force for the 'immaculate organisation of the event. President Mugabe Mugabe has also congratulated the Defence Forces for having their college (Zimbabwe National Defence College in Mazowe) upgraded to a university status and has encouraged members of the force to take up courses being offered there. He has also congratulated Dr Chiwenga on the attainment of his PHD. President Mugabe has concluded his remarks



Models · 15 August 2017






Alick Macheso performs during the ZDF Day celebrations · 15 August 2017
Alick Macheso entertains the crowd at the NSS during the ZDF Day celebrations

12:32 - President Mugabe says he hopes as the economy improves, salaries of the ZDF members will be considered and increased. "It is also strongly recommended that the housing projects in Dzivarasekwa, Khumalo and Zimbabwe Military Academy aimed at improving the housing provision for the ZDF, should be resuscitated. "President Mugabe has congratulated the Defence Forces on their 37th anniversary of their celebrations adding that Zimbabweans owe it to the force.

12:30 -"In an effort to improve conditions of service of the ZDF, Government has provided staff with vehicles and other equipment. However, a lot more needs to be done on medical support, housing, salaries and allowances,

12:29 - "There is a contingent of ZDF members currently deployed in Tanzania, participating in a SADC Special forces Exercise, code named Exercise Matumbamwe taking place from 1 to 31 August 2017.

12:26 -" On the international scene, the ZDF continues to deploy officers to regional and international peace support operations under the auspices of the SADC, AU, and UN. As such, six defence forces officers are currently deployed in Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan Members of the apostolic sects attend the ZDF Day celebrations at the National Sports Stadium Tuesday afternoon.

12:25 - "During the cyclone Dineo induced floods, the ZDF deployed health personnel and helicopters to rescue Marooned villagers in Tsholotsho, Zvimba, Gokwe, Mt Darwin, Masvingo and Gwanda areas. "In 2015 and 2016, the ZDF were also very active in the movement of drought relief maize to the needy areas through out the country. Without the involvement of the ZDF, we would not have managed.

12: 23- "During their annual ZDF community assistance week this August, the Ministry of Defence handed classroom blocks in Himago Secondary School and also in Dzivarasekwa (Harare).

12:21 - "The ZDF also carried out other projects which Dr Sekeramayi has already highlighted," says President Mugabe.

12:20 - "The ZDF has always honoured it's obligation of providing military and to civil communities. "One case in point is Murongwe Primary school which I officially handed over in the Dande Community. The school was transformed from the pole and dagga (structures that it was)

12:15 - "While the HALO Trust is working on the Mukumbura, Rushinga area, the NPA is working in the Cecil and Forces border area. And they have registered significant progress. "Zimbabwe as a state party to the Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of the Anti Personnel Landmines is expected to comply with the 2025 deadline of clearing all mined areas.12:18 -"To meet the deadline, the Ministry of Defence recently enlisted the services of two more international de-mining NGOs which are expected to start before the end of 2017. The two NGOs are Mines Advisory Organisation and Apopo.

12:10 - President Mugabe says these are bombs planted by the colonialists and are dangerous because they detonate when one steps on them (regardless of how long they have been planted) adding that what makes it worse is that it is not known where exactly they were planted. The ZDF, in de-mining the country borders of anti-personnel landmines, received invaluable assistance from two NGOs, the HALO Trust and the Norwegian People's Aid (NPA) President Mugabe thanks the two countries for rendering assistance in this regard.

12:07 - President Mugabe says the ZDF together with the ZRP have managed to curb smuggling of contraband and also protected mining fields. The ZDF corps of engineers conducted the defining operations on the south-eastern Mozambique border in the Dumsa and Gwaivhi areas.

12:05 - "IT gives me great pleasure to join the ZDF in celebrating their 37th today. The celebration affords us the opportunity to reflect on our security achievements and superb work that the gallant sons and daughters in the ZDF have achieved since the attainment of our independence," President Mugabe begins his address. We say congratulations to them , The secure environment we have enjoyed as a country has not been a walk in the park for the ZDF. While our detractors continue to work round the clock to frustrate our development, the ZDF has always been alert to these manoeuvres. The ZDF has always resolutely defended our territorial integrity. Together with other arms of security, they have ensued that peace peace prevails all the time.

12:00 - The Minister of Defence has invited President Mugabe to give his remarks.

11:59 - Dr Sekeramayi welcomes everyone to the 37th edition of Zimbabwe Defence Forces celebrations saying the force has earned respect regionally and internationally over the years. "Your Excellency, the ZDF would not have achieved the milestones they did, had it not been the visionary and intellectual influence you continue to impart on us," says Dr Sekeramayi. Dr Sekeramayi says the ZDF continues to embark on community building initiatives adding that classroom blocks and laboratories have been handed over to various schools across the country. This, he says will go a long way in enhancing the country's STEM learning objectives.

11:58 - Colonel Muchakazi has invited the Minister of Defence, Dr Sydney Sekeramayi to give his remarks and thereafter invite the Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces to address the gathering. Dr Sekeramayi starts with salutations, recognising the presence of Vice President Mphoko, Minister of State for Harare Provincial Affairs, Diplomats and service chiefs.

11:47 - Chaplin General, Colonel Joseph Nyakudya gives today's bible reading11:51 - Today's message is centred on the Lord's Prayer. Colonel Nyakudya says the prayer implores God's will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. Likewise, in a military set up, the will of the parade commander carries the day. He reckons this is the discipline that keeps the force intact Minister Saviour Kasukuwere in also attended the celebrations of the ZDF Day at the National Sports Stadium Tuesday afternoon.

11:43 -President Mugabe moves over to take his seat in the VVIP tent

11:36 - The parade is now chanting the Zimbabwe Defence Forces war cry after which they sing the popular song, Nyika yedu yeZimbabwe/ilizwe lethu leZimbabwe. In their war cry, they dedicate their lives to protecting this country saying they are prepared to die for it.

11: 21 - The Director of Ceremonies is Peter Muchakazi, Director responsible for Administration and Research in the Ministry of Defence.

11:20 - The Defence Forces marching past in slow motion. Wild cheers as the members of the Defence Forces march past their Commander in Chief in fast motion.

11:12- The Commander in Chief of the Defence Forces who is accompanied by his deputy, Dr Chiwenga has finished inspecting the guard of honour which was accompanied by instrumentals by the ZNA band.11:16 - The parade commander is back to the Commander in Chief, this requesting for permission to march past in slow and quick march. Permission has been duly granted.

11:10 - Commemorated just a day after the Heroes Day, the Defence Forces Day is meant for Zimbabweans to pause, reflect and cherish the peace and tranquillity that prevails in the country due to the diligence of the force.

11:00- The Zimbabwe National Army band leads the gathering in singing the national Anthem and this marks the beginning of official proceedings here. Parade Commander moves forward to request His Excellency for permission to inspect the guard of honour mounted by the Zimbabwe Defense Forces.

Commander of the Defence Forces, General Constantino Guvheya Nyikadzino Chiwenga, National Army Commander Lieutenant-General Philip Valerio Sibanda and Air Force of Zimbabwe Commander Air Marshal Perrence Shiri arrive for the celebrations of the ZDF at the National Sports Stadium Tuesday afternoon.

10:58 - Service chiefs have arrived and they are closely followed by Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko. His Excellency, who is also the Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defense Forces is making his way into the stadium and Zimbabweans rise to show respect. Already, service chiefs are standing at the podium to receive the President.


Source: the herald

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