Heritage, Tourism month gets off the ground


PRETORIA: (By Steve Jobs)– With September being both Heritage and Tourism Month, government has pressed hard on South Africans to visit heritage sites to reflect on the journey the country has travelled since 1994.

Since the dawn of democracy 20 years ago, government has built new museums, monuments and commemorative sites as part of crafting a new and inclusive narrative for the country.

These include Freedom Park in Tshwane, the Ncome Museum in KwaZulu-Natal, the Matola Memorial and Interpretation Centre in Mozambique, the Steve Biko Centre in Ginsberg and the Nelson Mandela Museum in Mthatha.

As part of the 20 Years of Freedom campaign, government will launch ‘Freedom Fridays’ on 20 September in partnership with LEAD SA and Proudly South African.

“Cabinet calls on all South Africans to commemorate our history and celebrate our diverse cultures during Heritage Month,” acting Cabinet spokesperson Phumla Williams told the media following the executive’s regular fortnightly meeting.

Williams also called on South Africans to support natural heritage by visiting national parks free of charge from 9 – 13 September, as part of the 8th annual South African National Parks (SANParks) Week.

This year’s Heritage Month celebrations are marked under the theme: ‘Reclaiming, Restoring and Celebrating Our Living Heritage’, which is a call to recognise the importance of the tangible heritage, museums, commemorative sites and interpretation centres in building an inclusive society.

National Heritage Day will be celebrated at Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane in the Eastern Cape.

Freedom Fridays encourage people to wear anything that makes them feel South African each Friday.

Williams said the campaign will provide a platform for South Africans to “cherish our hard-fought freedom to ensure that future generations are able to benefit from our developmental democracy”.

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