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Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe’s Tourism Town, Upgraded To City Status




(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Zimbabwe’s prime tourism town of Victoria Falls has been upgraded to a city, a development which the country expects will make enhance competitiveness and boost tourism.

Victoria Falls was born in 1904 when the first structures were built by the Rhodesian government which started constructing the Victoria Falls Bridge, now a tourist attraction facing the Waterfall.

It was made a town in the 1970s and upgraded into a municipality in 1991.

The President Mnangagwa government has now upgraded it into a city to become the eighth city in Zimbabwe, and only one in Matabeleland North province, as well as second after Bulawayo in the whole of Matabeleland region on the southern parts of the country.

“I congratulate Victoria Falls City Council for the milestone of attaining city status. It is indeed befitting given that the new city is our country’s premier tourism destination,” said President Mnangagwa.

He made the proclamation this week through Statutory Instrument 285 of 2020 before officially conferring the honour on Wednesday.



He however reiterated the need to preserve Victoria Falls as a natural wonder, a heritage set aside by the UNESCO.

“As we implement the integrated landscape and development plan for Victoria Falls, the preservation of our sacred environmental and cultural heritage remains a priority. To this end, the ecosystem of our God given Mighty Victoria Falls, Mosi-oa-Tunya, one of the Seven Wonders of the World should be jealously protected and safeguarded. The habitat of animals and their age old corridors must continue to be respected,” the President said.

The city council also presented Freedom of the City to President Mnangagwa for his contribution to Zimbabwe’s history and development of the city, as it becomes the first town to be ungraded by his administration.

Freedom of the City is a highest honour given to an individual for his or her contribution to the society and grants the person unhindered freedoms.

“The conferment of Freedom of City coincides with yet another milestone where we witness Victoria Falls Municipality attaining city status. It is with utmost appreciation that I accept and receive this great honour of the conferment of the Freedom of the City of Victoria Falls.

“The conferment goes beyond the recognition of my own personal contributions but a dedication to the many living and departed heroes and heroines of our protracted liberation struggle. The honour for me symbolizes my freedom from the arresting chains of the racist and oppressive colonial regime and subsequent deportation through Victoria Falls to Zambia,” he added.

President Mnangagwa said during the colonial period, he was arrested by Rhodesian police and served in detention for 10 years before being released in 1972 when he was deported to Zambia through Victoria Falls.

The President grew up in Zambia where he did his education before joining Zimbabwe’s struggle for liberation.


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