The 42nd Independence Anniversary of the Republic of Zimbabwe was celebrated Thursday night at Southern Cross Club in Canberra.
Mr Joe Tapera Mhishi, Ambassador of the Republic of Zimbabwe hosted a reception which was attended by the diplomatic corps including The Chief of Protocol Mr. Ian Mcconville, Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, Ali Kraishan, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Dean of the Africa Group, Marthinus Van Schalkwyk, High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa , Ambassadors/ High Commissioners based in federal capital, political leaders, media representatives, and notables.
Ceremony began with offering toast by Ambassador Joe Tapera Mhishi and then national anthem of Australia and Zimbabwe were played.
Welcoming the distinguished guests, Ambassador Joe Tapera Mhishi paid tributes to freedom fighters who were instrumental in establishment of a democratic and independent nation of Zimbabwe.
“We pay tribute to the stalwarts of the struggle for Zimbabwe’s independence. We pay tribute to Zimbabwe’s friends in the SADC region, on the African continent, in Europe, Asia, the Pacific, Latin America and the Americas. Without the material, moral, diplomatic, political, and military support of these friends, in 1980 Zimbabwe might not have gained its independence”, he said.
“We are here gathered to celebrate the life of a very young nation in the community of nations, in particular under the United Nations system”, Ambassador Joe Tapera Mhishi said.
While modern day Zimbabwe is relatively a young nation among the community of nations, nationhood for the people of Zimbabwe pre-dates Independence Day on 18 April, 1980.
18 April, in 1980 marks the day on which the people of Zimbabwe attained independence from British colonial rule. That glorious event was the culmination of a protracted war of liberation that lasted for about 14 years. It was a war waged by the then colonised people of Zimbabwe that had endured foreign occupation for nearly a century.
He also paid tributes to the ancestors and highlighted the rich cultural, architectural and archaeological heritage of Zimbabwe.
“It is important to understand and respect this history of ancient Zimbabwe because Zimbabweans yesterday are Zimbabweans today and tomorrow”, Ambassador Joe Tapera Mhishi remarked.
He paid tributes to all the people of Zimbabwean origin living in the Commonwealth of Australia and whose immense contribution in Australian life is widely acknowledged by the Australian government and Australian businesses.
Ambassador Joe Tapera Mhishi emphasized that the 2nd Republic in Zimbabwe under President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa is guided by its foreign policy of a Zimbabwe that is a friend of all and enemy of none.
Under this foreign policy thrust, Zimbabwe invites all global partners to do business with it under its economic mantra Zimbabwe is Open For Business.
He said that Australia remains an important partner of Zimbabwe. Our partnership with Australia has subsisted since establishment of diplomatic relations in 1980.
There is potential for strengthening relations in the sectors of mining, agriculture, education, technical cooperation and tourism.