Reclaiming public places and building two museums

As part of documenting the rich liberation struggle history of the crime- infested township of KwaMashu, eThekwini municipality is planning to build two museums there that will keep records and tell the township’s stories.

One of these museums will be the home of current African National Congress national chairperson Baleka Mbete.

Outlining the plans exclusively to The New Age on Saturday, head of parks, recreations and cemeteries in the municipality Thembinkosi Ngcobo said this is part of their social cohesion programme, which includes hosting festivals in townships, reclaiming public spaces like parks that have been taken over by vandals and instilling confidence in townships as places worth inhabiting and investing in.

“We will build two museums. One of the museums will be based at K-Section of the township and it will document the history of political violence between the UDF and Inkatha aligned structures in the 1980s and early 90s.”

“We are also in discussion with Baleka Mbete to surrender her family house at E-section in the township so that we can convert it into a museum as it has rich history of the liberation struggle, which should be preserved and its story told to others,” said Ngcobo.

This is not the first time the city has honoured Mbete or her family for their role in the struggle.

Just recently, she was honoured by the city as a living legend for her gallant role in the liberation of the country from apartheid.

Further outlining the city’s plans to rejuvenate townships, Ngcobo said they plan to reclaim public spaces like parks and stage festivals in them so that people will attracted back to the townships.

“Partly because public spaces like parks have been taken over by vandals, people have moved away from them.

So, for every township, we want to have something staged in it every now and then so that we reclaim these places from vandals and criminals.”

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