The Church and Civil Society Forum (CCSF) in conjunction with Bulawayo Agenda held a Peace Concert in Plumtree’s Ezemnyama village (by the border with Botswana) on Saturday.

In a bid to foster peace in the village which was traumatized by election violence the Christian and civil society saw it fit to hold this peace concert.

Ezemnyama village is prone to election violence and in great need of healing and reconciliation. The concert was aimed at building citizen participation, community democracy and local development and it ran under the slogan “It begins with you, Shun violence.”

Bulawayo Agenda spokesperson, Mmeli Dube, said that the main thrust of this initiative was to make the community come together and provide a platform for forgiveness. “Our main objective was not to preach about the wrongs done, but facilitate a platform for the villagers to talk things over. We gave the leaders a chance to speak so that they may show their commitment to building a peaceful environment,” said Dube.

The Ezemnyama village heads committed themselves to help create and maintain a peaceful environment. Dube said that the coming together of the various leaders from different political parties is symbolical of the peaceful environment prevailing in the country.

Revellers marvelled at the routine dances made by the various dance groups invited to the peace concert. In song and dance, the villagers enjoyed themselves and the they would not mind to do it again.

Headman of the area, Fanyana Maisa, said that he was delighted by the peace programme because his area is prone to violence, especially before, during and after elections. “I am very happy about the peace project launched here because there [are] people who cause trouble in the community especially in times of elections. We hope this programme will warn those fond of violence,” said Maisa.

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