Harare – The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) has partnered with South African based events management firm, BigTime for the next three editions of the Harare International Carnival, starting this year, an official said on Thursday.
The carnival, to be held from September 1 to 10 this year, has since been re-branded to BigTime Harare International Carnival and will run under the theme “One Love, Our Unity Our Pride”.
In a speech read on his behalf, ZTA chief executive officer Karikoga Kaseke said the sponsor would promote a number of local and international artists, supply the main stage and PA system among other things.
“So in recognition of their invaluable contribution, sponsorship and partnership the event will be named Big Time Harare International Carnival,” he said.
Kaseke said Treasury had already availed funding for the hosting of the event.
He said a number of changes would be introduced for this year’s carnival, chiefly the route for the headline event, the street party.
In previous carnivals, the parade would march through selected streets in the central business district (CBD) and converge at the Africa Unity Square in the CBD but this year the parade will converge at the Robert Mugabe Square just outside the CBD.
Kaseke said with support from various stakeholders, Robert Mugabe Street would be transformed from its existing state.
The street is characterized by a huge number of vendors, litter and unruly transport operators who pick up passengers at undesignated pick up points.
“Starting this year every edition of the carnival must have a sustainable legacy project that will benefit our communities and economy at large,” Kaseke said.
He said at least 25 countries were expected to attend the carnival, up from 18 in the last one held in 2015.
“Last time we mentioned that the DRC had proposed to be the partner country for the next three editions of the carnival but because of the impact and magnitude the carnival has taken, we now have more countries expressing their desire to partner us,” he said.
The Samba queens from Brazil, who proved a hit in the previous carnival, will also attend this year’s edition.-New Ziana