David Martin Exhibition opens

Speaking at an opening of an exhibition on the life and work of the late writer at the National Arts Gallery in Harare, Mozambican Ambassador to Zimbabwe Vincente Veloso said Martin was a dedicated liberator of Southern Africa.

“He played a part in the liberation struggle of Southern Africa through his investigative journalism and also exposed the effects of the sabotage by the apartheid regime on the Southern African economies,” Veloso.

He said the exhibition being held under the theme “Life and Liberation” was held to pay homage to Martin who died on August 6, 2007 in Harare.

Veloso said visitors to the gallery would have an opportunity to see Martin’s collection of art from several countries including Mozambique, Tanzania, Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He said the exhibition would run from until August 23.

Veloso said the title was specifically chosen as a way to reflect the liberation struggle and many challenges Martin faced.

He said Martin also wrote extensively about the liberation movements in Africa as well as the economic and military destabilisation played by apartheid South Africa.

Martin who was friends with the likes of former Tanzanian President, Benjamin Mkapa, lived in Tanzania from 1964 to 1974 and in Zambia from 1976 – 1980.

He also lived in Mozambique and Angola before he relocated to Zimbabwe during the transition to independence in 1980.

In Zimbabwe, Martin established the Zimbabwe Publishing House in 1981 to facilitate local publication of African literature into English which was then imported.

In 1983, he brought the concept of book fairs to Southern Africa when he founded the Zimbabwe International Book Fair.

Martin was also a founding director of the Southern African Research and Documentation Centre, a regional research centre whose founding patron was former Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere in 1985 and the Musoketwane Environment Resource Centre for Southern Africa in 1992 and a trustee of the Josia Magama Tongogara legacy foundation.

August 2008
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