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Remembering Mudenge’s fandango dance

The late Higher Education Minister Stan Mudenge loved to decorate his speeches with colourful and bombastic language. Today we take time out to remember his most memorable quote ever.

Remembering Mudenge’s fandango dance
Remembering Mudenge’s fandango dance

Addressing a graduation ceremony at the Harare Polytechnic in 2010 the late historian and veteran diplomat denied claims that students were being prevented from writing exams over non-payment of fees.

“Such a claim is playing fandango dance with the facts. It is based on a farrago of confusion which has created a phantasmagoria of conflicting images of dreamland on the minds of the public,” he said.

Fandango is a lively couples dance, usually in triple metre, traditionally accompanied by guitars and castanets or hand-clapping (“palmas” in Spanish and Portuguese). Fandango can both be sung and danced.

As a result of the extravagant features of the dance, the word fandango is used as a synonym for “a quarrel,” “a big fuss,” or “a brilliant exploit.”

Phantasmagoria meanwhile is a fantastic sequence of haphazardly associative imagery, as seen in dreams or fever or a shifting series of phantasms, illusions, or deceptive appearances, again as in a dream or as created by the imagination.

Dr Mudenge, knew his stuff…….. RIP.