Harare, Zimbabwe – The South African based Zimbabwean Arts and Media Consultant, Martin Chemhere, announced last week that after months of negotiations with the Marley Family, he has been granted permission to erect a statue of international Reggae legend Bob Marley in Zimbabwe.
I’m thrilled to have finally succeeded in this project for our beautiful country. This approval is a great achievement for Zimbabwe (and Africa) as the statue will attract tourists. -Chemhere
Speaking to the dailynews, Martin revealed that the statue will be an eight-meter life size bonze replica of Marley and molded by South African artists, Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse Van Vuuren, the duo who made the Nelson Mandela statue at the South African Parliament building.
In 1980, the reggae icon was invited to preform in Zimbabwe as part of the country’s independence celebrations. According to records, in a show of support and love, Marley surprised the Zimbabwean government by refusing compensation and paying for the chartered flight and other expenses incurred from the trip from his pocket.
I have no doubt this is a national project and I will be talking to several stakeholders including the Zimbabwean government, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, Harare City Council, Corporate companies and individuals at home and abroad as well as donor community and others for support. -Martin
Martin has proposed the iconic Rufaro Stadium as the location for the statue since that is where the artist and his band, the Wailers performed.
Zimbabwe is the only African country where Bob Marley and the Wailers performed. The statue is expected to attract tourist to the country similar to how the artists attracts tourists to Jamaica.
Prior to construction, the renders must be approved by the family and representatives from bobmarley.com