It is my pleasure to warmly welcome you all to these historic national celebrations, marking 38 years of our hard-won independence. This year’s celebrations have a renewed significance, as they are the first under the new dispensation, the first in a new Zimbabwe.
Today, we remember all the heroes and heroines of our liberation struggle, who paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we may enjoy our freedom and national self-determination today. We honour and salute them for the independence and freedom that they bequeathed us. May their memory live on through the achievements and aspirations of our great nation, and may their souls rest in eternal peace.
Five months ago, the people of Zimbabwe took to the streets in a peaceful revolution. They called for freedom, progress and a new way of doing things. Like the heroes before them, they called for a new Zimbabwe. We heard their voices, we shared their vision, and we are committed to delivering it.
Together, we are embarking on a new journey of nation building, irrespective of creed, language, age, religion, or political persuasion. In unity, peace, and harmony, guided by the love of our country, and informed by a desire to build a better tomorrow, we are rekindling the pride in being Zimbabwean.
We have raised our national flag high. Our national anthem reverberates in every corner of our great country, a constant reminder of our identity, and a prayer to God Almighty to abundantly, “Bless our native land!” I call on all Zimbabweans, at home and abroad, to proudly celebrate the past, and boldly stride forward, arm-in-arm, towards a brighter future.
Our 38 years of independence have not been without challenges. Mistakes have been made, opportunities have been missed. In recent years, progress has not been as smooth as we would have liked. But today, 38 years after we declared our Independence and five months into our new Zimbabwe, we say Makorokoto! Amhlophe! Congratulations Zimbabwe! God Bless Zimbabwe!
At my inauguration, in recognition of the challenges facing us, I underscored the urgent need to pursue rapid economic growth and a trajectory of transformation. In this endeavour, my administration’s focus is on the pursuit of investment-led economic recovery, job creation, enhancing the ease of doing business, attaining national food security, poverty reduction, construction and rehabilitation of critical infrastructure, effective provision of social services, respect for the rule of law, and the fostering of an environment in which private enterprise is allowed, encouraged, and protected.
We have set our national vision to be a middle income country by 2030, with increased investment, broad-based empowerment, decent jobs, and a country free from poverty and corruption. Granted that the task is great, the pace of change is not always as we would have liked, and we will not achieve all our goals overnight.
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