The Minister of Youth Sport Arts and Recreation Honourable Kirsty Coventry has called on communities to preserve their cultures by transferring indigenous knowledge to the Youth.
Hon Coventry made the remarks yesterday during a Tour of the Murehwa Culture Centre which is administered by the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe.
The Minister who was accompanied by her Deputy, Hon Tinomuda Machakaire, said she was excited to be visiting the cultural centre to know how many young people were learning about their culture and how her Ministry could assist.
“As people, we need to know who we are. This is because our history or culture teaches us who we are. It is very disappointing to see many young people who come to the city who do not know who they are,” the Minister said.
She said Culture centres are integral in reminding Zimbabweans who they are shaping and they have to be used to tell the story of who we are as Zimbabweans.
“We can’t wait for someone from outside to tell us who we are or who we should be or where we came from. We have a strong history and we should be proud of that. I hope that this centre will be used more often by schools and even tourist when they come to Zimbabwe they need to Murehwa Cultural Centre,” Hon Coventry said.
The Minister said that she was happy that the arts and culture issues were beginning to get more support from the President Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa
Murehwa Cultural Centre was established in 1984 by the government of Zimbabwe to become a self-sustaining arts and culture centre contributing to community development by creating employment in aspects such as skills empowerment in cultural industries.
NACZ Acting Director Mr Josiah Kusena said the Centre was suffering from underutilization because of poor maintenance and dilapidated infrastructure.
“This centre used to host a lot of local and international events in the past, however, its infrastructure needs to be revamped for it to attract major artists. The biggest problem is funding, the council does not have the funds to keep this place afloat.” Said Mr Kusena.
A representative of the local Member of Parliament Mr Daniel Garwe called on the Ministry to revive the centre to benefit the local community.
“This place used to be very popular, even the late National Hero Tuku Samanyanga used to come here when there were national commemorations of big International Days but this has all stopped and the place is seriously underutilised. “ she said.
The tour of the Culture centre was also attended by the Chief Director in the Ministry of Youth Sports Arts and Recreation, Mr Benson Martin Dube, the NACZ Assistant Director Arts Promotion and Development Mrs Barbara Gotore and other government officials from the Ministry and Mashonaland East province.