HARARE – The 2018 edition of the Harare International Carnival has been cancelled, the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) announced on Wednesday.
The ZTA, which postponed the event in October citing “competing events”, says the onset of the rain season and a failing economy necessitated the cancellation of the event which had been rescheduled for December.
“The competing events at this time of the year, careful consideration of the weather conditions that are usually characterised by rainfall and the current prevailing economic climate contributed to this decision,” said Chief Koti, the ZTA’s head of corporate affairs in a statement.
He added: “We want to make sure that the event is everything that it should be and without adequate resources and a conducive environment, it would be a disservice to the Harare International Carnival brand and the general populace.”
The ZTA recently named controversial businessman Genius Kadungure as the ambassador of the carnival, which the ZTA says is an “eagerly anticipated annual event which celebrate the beauty of the Zimbabwean cultural diversity and celebration of our hopes and aspirations in the Second Republic.”
The ZTA spends tens of thousands of dollars every year on international guests and performers, including samba dancers from Brazil. But an economic crisis punctuated by the scarcity of foreign currency means such splurges are not possible this year.