In a bid to make the Fort Beaufort Museum appeal to all races, retain struggle history and praise unsung local heroes, the department of sport, recreation, arts and culture (Dsrac) launched the “room of struggle” exhibition, on 13 February.
The department has renovated the museum, creating what it calls “room of struggle exhibition” which has pictures of both local and national struggle heroes.
Dsrac MEC Pemmy Majodina said the project was part of a transformation agenda in which museums would reflect the national identity.
“This is rewriting of our history in a correct manner. The community will know where to sell their artifacts without discrimination barriers,” Majodina said.
She said the museum would exhibit work by heroes and heroines from the PAC and ANC on their political roles respectively through the armed struggle to liberate the country. “As it stands, the museum material on display is 90% white; surely that cannot be a true reflection of the rich history of this part of the country. Therefore things need to change;” added Majodina.
Nkonkobe Municipality Mayor AW Ntsangani said the project would also bring positive economic spin-offs for the area. “We are very excited and applaud this project because it will illustrate the history of our past leaders and also put Nkonkobe on the map as a historical area it is.
“We also envisage that such a project will attract people from outside the area, or even the province, and in that bring some economic benefits for the area.” He continued and said: “For us to anchor patriotism to our people, they must know where we come from. It is mostly important for our youth to know the correct history of this country and its people.”
PAC provincial secretary Jerome Mdyolo said the project had been well researched and would depict the exact history of South Africa’s struggle for liberation.
“We are very excited by the initiative. We applaud this project because it will illustrate the history of our past leaders;” Mdyolo said.
The museum was mandated by the department to do the exhibition in the three dominant official languages in the province
Written by: Yandiswa Vena