On the afternoon of Friday, September 12 the CBC Media Club was invited to attend the prize giving ceremony of My Beautiful Home (Comba Indlu Ngobuciko), a competition which aims to promote and keep alive traditional Zimbabwean art and culture. The event was held at the historical Amagugu Centre in the Matopos which meant that we also had the chance to learn about local history, culture and art.
The Media Club members were happy to meet their friend and guest photographer, Doctor Andre Van Rooyen, who has taken their photographic skills to a higher level, at the event. We were accompanied by Mrs Keetui, Mr Moyo and Mrs Kaufman.
When we were there we learnt about traditional Ndebele culture. We learnt about the clay pots and how they were made and decorated. We also learnt that to make the pots stronger they have to be fired. Designs and decorations are made when the pot is still wet. Cooking pots aren’t decorated because when you get them fired the paint and decorations peel off.
We learnt about how the Ndebele warriors dressed and the type of weapons they used. Ndebele warriors had a long spear which they threw at the enemy. They also had a shield long enough to cover the whole body. We learnt that if a warrior had scars on his back it meant that he was a coward because he had been running away.
We also learnt how an Ndebele kitchen looks. There is a place to cook in the centre of the room; the men sit behind the door and the women at the front to alert the men if an intruder is coming.
The founder and director of Amagugu, Mr. Phathisa Nyathi, addressed us, saying that it was an international heritage centre. He also told us the centre was one of five in the whole of Zimbabwe.
After our guided tour of the centre it was time for the prize giving ceremony for the most beautifully decorated homesteads in two wards of the Matobo District. The winner in different categories were given wonderful prizes by several local companies including Kango Products, Icrisat, Squeaky Clean Car Wash, the Fortwell Group, Freight Consultants and Halstead Brothers.
The homestead of Mrs Sikhanyiso Ngwenya of ward 16, decorated with beautiful figurines and floral designs, came first overall.
Members of the Matobo community who attended the event were elated to see a group of people of various cultures coming together to support them.
One contestant interviewed after the prize giving called the event “unprecedented”, saying it gave them energy to keep going and developing their artistic skills even further.
In conclusion, the CBC Media Club members would like to thank Mr John Knight and his team of organisers for offering us such a unique opportunity to cover a cultural event which was also of great benefit to us as History, IsiNdebele and Isizulu students.
Report compiled by the Form 1 Media