Sunday, December 30, 2012

Zimbabwe President Mugabe An African Icon--Says South African Television Host

President Mugabe an African icon — Tambo

Sunday, 30 December 2012 00:00
Zimbabwe Sunday Mail

Top South African television presenter Dali Tambo has described President Mugabe as a true African icon whose legacy should be upheld throughout the continent.

Tambo is the son of the late African National Congress stalwart Cde Oliver Tambo and is highly respected across the continent.

Speaking after filming a documentary of Cde Mugabe for his weekly talk show, People of the South, at State House last week, Tambo said the President “is a person of substance” whose appeal is unique and overarching.

He said the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces remains iconic despite criticism from his detractors.

The documentary — capturing Cde Mugabe’s political career and personal life — will be aired on South African television channel SABC3 in January.

“No African should doubt that President Mugabe is an icon. He is a good example of an undeniable icon of Africa,” he said.

Tambo said President Mugabe bore a distinct sense of national identity throughout the interview, which is expected to evoke African pride among viewers.

“The aim of People of the South is to interview people of substance who have a unique and overarching appeal to viewers. President Mugabe fits this bill in every sense because his presence creates a strong sense of national identity and evokes a sense of pride in viewers,” said Tambo, who expressed his gratitude for being afforded the opportunity to spend time with the President.

Tambo jetted into the country on December 18. Accompanied by a 14-member crew, he filmed the documentary from December 19 to 21.

Lead cameraman Perseverance Dube said spending time with the First Family awakened him to the reality of Western propaganda against Zimbabwe.

“I am surprised by how down-to-earth and friendly the First Family is, considering all the bad publicity the Western media makes out of these good people,” he said.

“We were given access to the places the President holds dear; that include his rural home, the Gushungo Farm and the new school that is about to open. I am in awe of the good works the First Family is doing to reach out to the community.”

Dube said the President — during the interview — shares intimate details of his upbringing, his road to national leadership as well as his life as a husband and father.

“Most of the footage comprises the President telling the audience of all the facets of his life: how he was brought up, what made him start his political career, his days in jail and exile, the inspirational people in his life and the principles he upholds as a father and the President of a nation.

“These will be further illustrated visually by inter-cutting archive footage, photographs and personal memorabilia. The episode will culminate in a celebratory dinner where Dali encourages reminiscing, good humour, and a great sense of occasion.

“We also included detailed separate interviews of the First Lady and two of their children, Bona and Chatunga. We are convinced that we have come up with a riveting piece of work that will set the tone for the anticipated second season of People of the South and will grip the audience from start to finish.”

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