Pale Ya Rona lacked charm

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

The Johannesburg city centre came to a standstill on Saturday when the much-anticipated Gauteng Pale Ya Rona Carnival finally took place.

The young and old had an opportunity to showcase South Africa's diversity through costumes and dance. The famous Bree Street was the centre of activity as carnival participants strutted their stuff.

While the carnival became a huge inconvenience for shoppers and taxi drivers, people enjoyed watching the event.

About 15000 participants from all over Gauteng displayed their beautiful costumes for a distance of 3,5km. The carnival began at the Mary Fitzgerald Square, Newtown and ended at the Johannesburg Stadium. It was officially opened by Gauteng Premier Mbhazima Shilowa.

"Pale Ya Rona was one of the biggest events in Africa. The event has given us the chance to work with different countries and get to know and understand their cultures," said Shilowa.

In many countries such as Brazil, a carnival is a big celebration that attracts the world. It is all about elegance and colours.

However, Ya Rona lacked the glamorous spark that would have made the carnival more interesting. Most of the costumes were dull and did not make any impact.

Those who wore exceptional costumes were rewarded. Sedibeng region won the best presentation of costume award.