PRESIDENT Mnangagwa arrived in Bulawayo yesterday ahead of the Lupane State University (LSU) graduation ceremony set for today, while tomorrow he will meet chiefs to discuss issues affecting Matabeleland.

The President landed at the Joshua Mqabuko International Airport aboard an Air Zimbabwe plane shortly after 5PM.

President Mnangagwa was welcomed by the Minister for Provincial Affairs and Devolution in Bulawayo, Judith Ncube, service chiefs, senior Government officials and Zanu-PF leadership in the province.

The President, who is the Chancellor for all State universities, will preside over the hybrid graduation ceremony at LSU main campus in Lupane, Matabeleland North.

A hybrid graduation ceremony consists of a face-to-face and virtual event and has been necessitated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Higher and tertiary institutions took a break from the traditional way of holding graduation ceremonies where all graduands will be in attendance in view of the global pandemic.

Only a few graduands will attend the physical ceremony with the majority of them expected to follow proceedings online.

LSU director of marketing and communication Mr Zwelithini Dlamini said the stage has been set ahead of the unique graduation ceremony.

He said the university will have its first PHD student graduating today.

“We are ready for the graduation ceremony with the only difference this year being that it’s a virtual graduation ceremony. Graduands and guests who are supposed to attend today’s ceremony have been notified while the rest will follow the proceedings online. Transport arrangements have been made for those who would be physically attending the graduation ceremony,” he said.

Dlamini said President Mnangagwa is expected to commission several buildings to mark the progress made in the infrastructural development of the university.

“We are officially going to be laying a foundation stone for the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. The Chancellor will be laying that foundation.

“He is also expected to officially open the kitchen and dining hall as well as the students hostels complex,” said Dlamini.

With regards to tomorrow’s meeting with traditional leaders, President of the Chiefs Council Chief Charumbira said it will be improper to pre-empt the deliberations.

He said the engagement will be held at State House. “From time to time the President meets with chiefs from various regions, you might be aware that he was in Manicaland Province two weeks ago, now he is coming to that part of the country. He will be meeting with chiefs from Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South,” he said.

The President in his past engagements with chiefs from Matabeleland, engaged on how Government could best tackle the Gukurahundi issue to come up with permanent solutions.