THE National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) yesterday announced the burial programme for veteran playwright, film-maker and theatre director, Cont Mhlanga, who died in Bulawayo on Monday.
In a statement, NACZ) chief executive officer Nicholas Moyo, said:
“As we continue to mourn the legend, Cont Mdladla Mhlanga, who passed away on Monday, 1st August 2022 at the United Bulawayo Hospitals, the family has confirmed the burial programme.
“Preparations for taking Mdladla to his final resting place are going on smoothly led by an organising team, comprising family members, artists, (Bulawayo) City Council and the Government.”
Moyo acknowledged and hailed President Mnangagwa and the Bulawayo community.
“The team is grateful to the community of Bulawayo for the goodwill offered for various services to be provided in order to accord the deceased a funeral befitting his status and legacy.
“The family wishes to extend its gratitude to the President of Zimbabwe and the Government for according Cont Mhlanga a State-Assisted Funeral.
“This has gone a long way in addressing some key costs of services associated with a funeral of this magnitude.”
Moyo said a send-off memorial service will be held at the Bulawayo Amphitheatre tomorrow at 9am.
The service will celebrate his life and honour the contributions he made to the arts, theatre and culture sector in Zimbabwe and beyond.
“A drive through the city will be done before the funeral cortège heads to Lupane for burial on Saturday morning.
“In realisation of the public interest this funeral has attracted, the family decided to move the memorial service to a bigger venue.
“However, there will be a family service at Amakhosi Township Square in the morning of Friday.
“The family would like to thank those who have stood by them through this very difficult time and are eternally grateful for all the support and presence from all over the world.”
Moyo urged stakeholders in the arts sector to celebrate icons of Cont’s calibre.
“We are looking forward to celebrating a life that will be dearly missed.
“Zimbabwe has lost a great son and a national asset.
“The creative and cultural industry will remain poorer by the departure of such an illustrious creative.
“May the soul of Cont Mdladla Mhlanga rest in eternal peace.”