A 3.8-metre President Mugabe statue has been unveiled. It has raised a lot of negative comments particularly from Zimbabweans who are currently going through an economic hard phase.
The Mugabe statue shows the 92-year-old president raising a fist in the air. Although it is not an exact reflection of the president, save for the moustache, the nonagenarian is quite pleased with the statue.
“To see oneself reproduced this way, it’s something that should be more appreciated than just by saying ‘thank you’,” he was quoted by the state Herald newspaper as saying during the unveiling ceremony.
“I will say in an African way and in our own way, personally, thank you in a deeper way because it has gone deep in my heart.”
The Mugabe statue, which is said to have been donated to the president as charity, took over 6 months to complete. It was created by a local sculptor called Dominic Benhura who is quite known for his abstract stone sculptors.
“I wanted to make it as big as possible,” he said. “This is our number one so I wanted to give it a strong impression.”
Mr. Benhura did make a strong impression, albeit a negative one on Zimbabweans who ridiculed it on social media. A twitter user even said he could probably be on his way to the notorious Chikurubi prison.
Others noted that the Mugabe statue which appears to be leaning slightly seems to be a metaphor signifying that although many want Mugabe to fall, he remains standing.
While some also ridiculed the sculpture, others noted that it was simply Benhura’s style, who doesn’t sculpt as is, but uses an abstract representation.
The unveiling of the statue comes as Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa is seeking an IMF bailout, as the country embarks on a cost-cutting scheme to save the economy. The scheme will see 25,000 civil workers laid off, some embassies abroad closed, reduction of cabinet wages, among others.