Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe feted with lavish 92nd birthday party

MASVINGO, Zimbabwe -- Calling Robert Mugabe "dear father," "his royal highness," and "the Moses of Africa" members of Zimbabwe's ruling party reasserted their loyalty to the longtime leader at the celebration of his recent 92nd birthday.

See Full Article

By bus, truck and on foot, thousands of Zimbabweans wearing the colours of the ruling ZANU-PF party made their way to the normally sleepy southeastern city of Masvingo to mark Mugabe's birthday.

Mugabe, who has ruled since 1980, let 92 balloons into the air to start the festivities held at the historical Great Zimbabwe monument, about 25 kilometres (15 miles) from downtown Masvingo. During the televised event, school children performed military drills and recited poetry praising Mugabe and criticizing western nations.

Speaking for more than an hour, Mugabe criticized the political jockeying in his party, saying younger members who have spoken out against his wife Grace's growing power must be disciplined.

"It is shameful the way Mrs. Mugabe is being criticized," he said, accusing them of leaking scandals to the press. "Who may be the enemy among us?"

Mugabe also wants his birthday declared a national holiday.

Many supporters wore outfits emblazoned with Mugabe's portrait and feasted on beef and game meat. Political allies from the ruling parties of neighbouring countries took turns to congratulate Mugabe, who led the guerrilla war in the 1970s when this country was white-minority-ruled Rhodesia.

The event, dubbed the 21st February Movement after Mugabe's actual birthday, has been held since 1986. The Zimbabwean president marked his birthday earlier this week in smaller celebrations that included blowing out candles on 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.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Teen charged after classmate's dismembered body found near river

    World News Toronto Sun
    LAWRENCE, Mass. — A 16-year-old has been arrested and charged with murder in connection with the death of his 16-year-old classmate whose headless body was found near the Merrimack River in Lawrence, Massachusetts. Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said Mathew Borges was arrested Saturday morning. Source
  • Buzz Aldrin: Altitude sickness forced South Pole evacuation

    World News Toronto Sun
    CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand — Buzz Aldrin said he was evacuated from the South Pole last week because he became short of breath and began showing signs of altitude sickness. The 86-year-old adventurer, who was the second man to walk on the moon, released details on Sunday of his dramatic medical evacuation from Antarctica. Source
  • Oakland warehouse gutted by blaze was Bohemian art space

    World News CTV News
    OAKLAND, Calif. -- The warehouse gutted by a blaze that killed at least nine people was home to musicians, painters, woodworkers, dancers and other artists who came together to make art and hold dance performances and parties. Source
  • Architect Frank Gehry 'very worried' about Donald Trump

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Frank Gehry was recently honoured by Barack Obama at the White House, but the celebrated Canadian-born architect isn't too thrilled with the man next in line for the U.S. presidency: Donald Trump. Less than two weeks after receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom -- America's highest civilian honour -- the California-based Gehry was back in his hometown of Toronto on Saturday for a discussion about his life and work. Source
  • Deliberations by Texas jury prompts missing person report

    World News Toronto Sun
    WACO, Texas — One juror in a Central Texas robbery trial apparently forgot to tell her family she’d be working late deliberating in the case, prompting relatives to file a missing person report. The juror had been working late Thursday evening with fellow jurors in the McLennan County Courthouse and apparently had failed to let her family know about it, the Waco Tribune-Herald reported Saturday. Source
  • At least 9 dead in fire at Oakland, Calif., warehouse party [Photos] [Video]

    World News Toronto Sun
    OAKLAND, Calif. — At least nine people died in a blaze that broke out during a party in a warehouse late Friday night in the San Francisco Bay Area, according to fire officials. Oakland Fire Chief Teresa Deloche-Reed says at least another 13 people are unaccounted for as of Saturday morning. Source
  • Jill Stein's Green Party drops Pennsylvania recount bid

    World News CBC News
    The Green Party is dropping its court case seeking a statewide recount of Pennsylvania's Nov. 8 U.S. presidential election. It had wanted to explore whether voting machines and systems had been hacked and the election result manipulated. Source
  • Landlord caught on video having sex in tenant's bed; Charged with trespassing

    World News Toronto Sun
    COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A Colorado landlord faces a felony trespassing charge after a renter with a video security system caught the man having sex in his apartment. An arrest warrant has been issued for Carlos Quijada of Colorado Springs. Source
  • Medicine Hat family pleads for their baby's stolen ashes to be returned

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Months after the tragic loss of their baby, they still carry him wherever they go. But now the Medicine Hat family is pleading for the return of their baby's ashes, stolen from a Calgary hotel where Nathan and Laura Hudson were staying while in town for a ceremony to honour their child's death. Source
  • California cops use ’fake news’ in sting

    World News Toronto Sun
    LOS ANGELES — Police investigating a notorious gang in a city on California’s central coast issued a fake press release that the chief credited with saving two men by deceiving gang members who wanted to kill them, but the ruse was criticized by news organizations who reported it as fact. Source