By Staff Reporter/Agencies
ZIMBABWEAN businesses operating in South Africa have been honoured at a glittering gala dinner in the neighbouring country.
The awards dinner turned into a glitz and glamour event held the Sandton Convention Centre, with Zimbabwe’s ambassador to South Africa attending as guest of honour.
According to head panelist Lawrence Dube the Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) provides an opportunity to honours those that go through paid to contribute to the diaspora community and the economies in which they operate against heavy odds.
“It gives us an opportunity to honour Zimbabweans who are doing well in the diaspora. But more importantly the conversation this takes is that we see a lot of negativity and especially xenophobia against foreigners.
“We have Zimbabweans who are contributing to the South African economy, Zimbabweans who are community champions and for that we think people appreciate,” Dube said.
According to Dube the winners are initially nominated before the top candidates are voted for.
Ambassador Hamadziripi said the event gives government a chance to interact with Zimbabweans in foreign lands in which discussions towards contributing to Zimbabwe’s recovery are held.
“These awards are very important in so far as we are acknowledging the contributions and outstanding achievements by some of our compatriots.
“We also use them to urge other Zimbabweans to aspire to be recognised. But we are also saying we need the diaspora to go back home in Zimbabwe and lead the recovery of the country,” said Hamadziripi.
One of the sponsors WorldRemit managing director for Middle East and Africa Andrew Stewart said the diapora community is making great contributions to the global economy.
“We are a leading digital remittance company and our customers are the diaspora be it Zimbabweans, Nigerians or Ghanaians. It’s a privilege to be part of this event.
“Our customers are individuals who sacrifice while working abroad to sent money back home to support their loved ones. We are recognising the achievements of the diaspora, Zimbabweans living in the diaspora who are making significant contributions in the world,” Stewart said.
Tall-net Group of Schools were the overall winners within founder Justin Magidi promising to invest more in Zimbabwe and South Africa.
Magidi said the award “means a lot to the contributions we are making to both Zimbabwe and South Africa.”
Also honoured were former State media journalist Norah Spie and television personality Leroy Gopal known for his cameo role in a local blockbuster Yellow Card, television producer Monalisa Chisango and personality Mbo Mahocs among others.