‘Name streets after legendary artists’

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ARTISTS have challenged authorities to also consider outstanding individuals in the creative sector when renaming roads and public buildings.

This comes after roads and buildings in different towns and cities have been renamed mostly after political figures.

“Heroes are in every sector; be it sport, arts or business. The authorities should not just focus on political figures but we also need our roads to be named after our outstanding musicians such as Oliver Mtukudzi, Chiwoniso Maraire and Simon Chimbetu among others,” sungura musician Romeo Gasa said.

South Africa-based gospel musician Togarepi Chivaviro, who is currently in the United States of America concurred with Gasa.

“Surely we cannot fail to honour our musical heroes by naming even one road after them; does it mean heroes ended with the liberation struggle?” the Ebenezer hit maker asked.

Chivaviro also suggested a list of his heroes in the music industry who should be considered by the authorities.

“We have the late baba Mtukudzi, Leonard Dembo, Simon Chimbetu and Cde Chinx among others,” he said.
United Kingdom-based playwright Enisia Mashusha concurred with Gasa and Chivaviro adding the list should not end with musicians alone.

“The arts industry is broad. We have outstanding sculptors such as Dominic Benhura and giants in the film and book industry like Charles Mungoshi and his legendary wife Jesesi. These artists should be honoured by the authorities the way liberation stalwarts have been honoured,” she said.

Recently, the authorities have renamed nine more roads in Masvingo, Kwekwe, Mutare, Bulawayo, Chipinge, Chegutu, and Bindura after President Emmerson Mnangagwa, according to a new statutory instrument that has been released.

The first to be renamed was Enterprise Road in the capital and the road is now known as Emmerson Mnangagwa Road.

Last year, Mtukudzi became the first musician to be given national hero status by the government after he was declared a national hero.

However, his family opted to bury him in his rural home in Madziwa, just outside Bindura town in Mashonaland Central.

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