The Sunday Mail
ALTHOUGH, Mrs Marry Chiwenga did not confirm the price tag for last weekend’s glitzy affair at Mermaids Pool where politicians rubbed shoulders with celebrities, socialites and businesspeople – there is no doubt hundreds of thousands of dollars were spent.
For starters, the 57 Miss World Zimbabwe contestants spent three weeks at a boot camp in Victoria Falls where they stayed at the Elephant Hills Hotel and took part in money-chewing activities almost every day.
Forget their handlers, food and other expenses, they had to fly back to Harare and stay in another hotel for a week.
GALLERY OF THE FACES AT MISS ZIMBABWE EVENT
The marquee, which was erected at the venue and the decor that was put in place not to mention the stage, state-of-the-art PA system and lighting, all cost a fortune.
Every table at the event had two bottles of expensive whiskey, that is, Platinum and Blue Label Johnnie Walker. The whole place was raining wine, lagers, beers, juices and soft drinks.
The full course dinner itself and the luxury mobile toilets hired to ensure nobody got uncomfortable after eating or drinking too much, obviously cost an arm and a leg.
With numerous “A list” sponsors partnering the Miss Zimbabwe Trust plus a staggering US$300 entry fee per person – the pageant, which was beamed live on national television was indeed a royal affair.
It is difficult, however, to conclude whether the Miss World Zimbabwe pageant has become Mrs Chiwenga’s licence to print money, a platform to flex muscles or simply show off.
Black tie events are a nightmare! Really? Definitely not for the 600 guests that attended the Miss World Zimbabwe event at Mermaids Pool in Shamva on April 25.
It was swagger all around. Since it was a black tie event, it naturally meant that everyone would be elegantly dressed and thus no need to mention it, but no, there are others, especially women who were out to glitter.
From delightful maxi dresses, enchanting cocktail costumes to dazzling gowns that sparkled – the ladies all looked exquisite and beautiful for the event that is now definitely among the must-attend for the who-is-who in the showbiz industry.
Most men looked like it was their wedding day. Different types of tuxedos, shoes and accessories, the expensive kind, were on display at the Miss World Zimbabwe.
Security wise, there was absolutely nothing to fear, remember Marry’s powerful hubby, Commander Defence Forces General Constantine Chiwenga was in the house, Commissioner General of Police Augustine Chihuri was well represented and Air Marshal Perence Shiri of the Airforce of Zimbabwe was in the building.
Even the Minister of Defence Sydney Sekeramayi was there together with his Information, Media and Broadcasting Services counterpart Professor Jonathan Moyo. Several other ministers and deputy ministers were also at the event and so was their security.
Of course, there was private security hired for the event, and several well built, healthy looking men and women in dark suits, who never sat down or got inside the tent but were milling around the venue looking menacing.
Hundreds of cars parked quite a distance from the marquee were also under guard.
Those dancers, Elysium, really impressed. A lot of time was invested in putting together the production. They did not miss a single step, yet because of their numbers it always looked like something would go wrong. The drumming session, although, it was a repeat from last year’s debut, it was still great as it was participatory and a unique way of entertainment.
It was Leonard Zhakata, largely regarded as a spent force, who unbelievably struck the right chord. His music was soft on the ear, his act smooth and his delivery majestic. It is hard to think that anyone could have done it better than he did – he really is a man of talent. And oohh, Zhakata and his boys were looking smart and up for the occassion.
Trevor Dongo proved that his talent is indeed effortless, as he sang for over 30 minutes to the 15 models as they strutted on the ramp. On the other hand, Mudiwa “Hood” Mutandwa, a hip-hop gospel artiste, showed that he is a man of the people – he is the only performer who actually had the audience on its feet that night.
I feel though, that the organisers should have roped in a female performer – it was a night to honour women – I believe Ammara Brown, Selmor Mtukudzi, Cynthia Mare or any of the talented songbirds out there would have added value to the event.
Put simply – Mary nailed it this time around and for once, the national event had all the glitz and glamour that is expected of such an event. Kudos to Mary and her team!