David Livingstone – 200th Anniversary

From The Post, Zambia

David Livingstone Bicentenary (200th anniversary) UK liaison officer Belinda Hodge has announced plans to develop this event into a world-class festival and draw tourists from all over the world. During a recent media breakfast meeting in Livingstone, Hodge said David Livingstone, the Scottish explorer accredited with being the first European to see and name the Victoria Falls, was committed to exploration, medicine, education and eradication of slavery and was still an active campaigner 200 years later.

Hodge said the event to be commemorated in 2013 would also involve cultural exchange between schools and universities in Zambia and UK. And Livingstone-based David Livingstone Bicentenary 2013 committee liaison officer Frederick Mwendapole said the celebrations would include international arts, cultural and sporting festivals.

“The events to celebrate 200th anniversary of David Livingstone will be held between March and October 2013 in Livingstone. The event will promote Livingstone as a preferred tourism destination as tourists from abroad will come to Zambia and Livingstone in particular,” Mwendapole said. He said Zambia would work closely with several countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region to host the occasion.

“As you may be aware, David Livingstone was born in 1813 and it will be 200 years in 2013 from the time he was born. We are seeking to establish links between United Kingdom and Livingstone in Zambia to mark the bicentenary of David Livingstone. We want to ensure that there is a lasting legacy moving forward from this bicentennial year,” said Mwendapole.

And Zambia Tourism Board (ZTB) tourism services manager Jocelyn Mutinta said the event would help to market Livingstone and Zambian tourism products in general to the outside world. Mutinta appealed to companies to support the event and the marketing of Zambian tourism by helping in celebrating a man who is credited with having first documented the Victoria Falls, and later died in Zambia in 1873 at Chitambo mission.

Livingstone Tourism Association (LTA) member Active Monze said the event was a welcome development because it would go a long way in promoting Livingstone town as a preferred destination for tourists.

Zambia and Zimbabwe will also co-host the 20th Session of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) general assembly in 2013 in Livingstone and Victoria Falls town.