Arts & Lifestyle
Inaugural Mosi-oa-Tunya Festival set to be launched
ORGANISERS of the Mosi-oa-Tunya Festival, a multinational event that promotes cultural exchange and international business partnerships, say they are going to use the event to improve investment in Zimbabwe’s resort city of Victoria Falls.
The inaugural festival, which brings music and business together, is set for launch next week, laying the ground for the main event scheduled for Victoria Falls in August this year.
The festival is set to provide a platform for businesses, investors and entrepreneurs to showcase their products, services and ideas, while creating networking opportunities for local and international businesses.
Some of the key speakers earmarked for the festival include US-based Fredy Muks, a board chairperson of Global Music at the Recording Academy (Grammy), conveners of the prestigious Grammy Awards.
It will also feature business and tourism players, for instance international real estate agent Karen Nyenga and Annabelle McKenzie, director of the Year of Return and Beyond Year of the Return for the Ghana Tourism Authority. The Year of the Return is a call by the government of Ghana to the African diaspora to return and be a part of the transformation of Africa using the West African country as a gateway.
Mosi-oa-Tunya Festival co-founder Caroline Samuel said the fiesta is important for marketing Victoria Falls as a tourism destination.
“The reason why we are doing this is that we would like to promote the Victoria Falls as a tourism destination. Being one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, it is something huge for Zimbabwe and we need to highlight it to the world.
“And also, we would like a few businesses to come in from outside, because the Victoria Falls is a Special Economic Zone. We would like to open a few office parks there so that we can invite investment into the country. There is lots of opportunities there in Victoria Falls.
“If you look at the construction of convention centres, there is not one there. We need more accommodation in Victoria Falls and also medical tourism, among others,” she told The NewsHawks.
She said the festival will also provide a platform for investors and entrepreneurs to showcase their products and services, making it easier for local businesses to meet with international counterparts.
“Victoria Falls having a lot of opportunities, we are going to be talking about energy, healthcare and several other things happening, for example mining. On health, Zimbabwe does not have a one-stop medical centre where our sportspeople can go to. That is one thing we would like to have in Zimbabwe.
“That will also promote more sportspeople from around the continent and around the world to come through to Zimbabwe and come and have camps in Victoria Falls, which will bring investments to Zimbabwe. That will also tie in with construction opportunities that are there in Victoria Falls.
“As well as free-economic zone, we make it a financial hub and make it an office park. We also do not have a theme park in Zimbabwe, which is something that we can have.”
The festival’s co-founder, Sianne Adeosun, said they are also looking to promote corporate social investment in Victoria Falls through the extravaganza.
“With regards to CSR, we are looking to partnership with IOAN Nurses in USA which are going to help use equip a nursing homes we have Victoria Falls and to help us with up-to-date equipment like blood pressure machines, bedding and beds to revamp the living conditions of the elderly living at the place.
“We are going to help the nursing homes by providing the nurses with some training as well. So, that is one of the programmes we have going on. The partners are also going to provide a new technology that would allow people get e-prescriptions which will scrap out situations where people go to hospitals and get charged a lot. So that is the technology that is going to be introduced through us, and is first coming to Victoria Falls.”
Adeosun said they will help revamp Boabab Primary School, which is going to host the festival.
“We could have picked a hotel, but we thought of giving back and making sure that the children see good examples of their fellow citizens. We decided that we are going to revamp the school, and get their basketball court up.
“The school is not bad, but it just needs a facelift. So we are just going to paint and fix the fencing. We are also going to try and provide them with computers and sponsorships. We are speaking to people that are willing to provide internet access, solar panels and also teachers with a good working environment and free meals for children,” she said.