It is not everyday that female journalists get to put their notebooks aside and engage the First Lady woman to woman.
While most people are now accustomed to her contagious smile, members of the media got to realise last week that her smile is not skin deep.
Genuine smiles are pretty darn attractive for more reasons than one.
A smile suggests one to be personable, easy going and empathetic.
First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa is an easy-going and humble woman.
She seems to take a cue from St Paul who cautions: “Do not think more highly of yourself than you ought.” (Romans 12 v 3).
On this particular day, Monday the 5th, she was at ease as she made her way into the State House.
She was hosting female scribes from both the private and State media.
Donning a black floral twinset top, matching black camisole, cream skirt and black court shoes, she indeed matched the mood of the day.
This was a meeting between a mother and her daughters.
The high tea meeting intended to demystify the highly esteemed Office of the First Lady. It did that; and then more.
In order to create a relaxed atmoshere for open conversation, the First Lady kindly asked her security details to excuse the gathering, only to be readmitted after the conversations had been wrapped up.
The journalists got the opportunity to share the challenges they face in the execution of their duties.
They also aired their expectations on how the Office of the First Lady office should function.
The First Lady encouraged constructive criticism and promised to keep her doors wide open.
In her welcoming remarks, Cde Mnangagwa said the event was an open meeting.
“This is an open meeting, non-political and non-partisan. Just Zimbabwean women socialising and discussing various issues together.
“I don’t expect to know who has come from which organisation or which media house but only your names are sufficient to me.”
She revealed that her passion for women empowerment comes from her own humble upbringing.
Accompanying her were TelOne managing director Mrs Chipo Mtasa and CBZ divisional director (business banking) Mrs Molly Dingani.
They shared tips on how to start businesses and encouraged female journalists to explore entrepreneurial projects that will help develop the country and improve their welfare beyond the newsroom.
Amai Mnangagwa also took the opportunity to reveal some of the projects she is working on in her personal capacity.
One of the projects she prides herself in doing is the chicken and duck project at her farm, which has since grown to be a big business venture.
“Inini ndine huku dzangu nemadhadha angu kumba kwangu uku. Ndakatanga nehuku one nejongwe one but iko zvino zvawanda. They alert me when there are visitors at the gate. You don’t have to start big, kana uchida huya ndikupe utangewo,” she jokingly offered the female scribes to start their own projects from her breed.
“After this day, I look forward to hearing positive stories about you, about how you are excelling and the positive strides to greatness you would have made.”
After all was said and done, the First Lady and her guests sealed it all off on the dance floor.
At the end of the day, she is just like any other Zimbabwean woman.
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