Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa says the department will meet with young people to discuss government's plans to erect a national monument that will depict the country's identity based on its rich history and heritage.

The Minister said this when he launched the Heritage Month programme at the Imbizo Centre in Parliament in Cape Town recently.

He said the country, which came from a difficult colonial and apartheid past, needed to rewrite its own story to include history and heritage that were omitted from history books.

The Minister said the Department of Arts and Culture was in talks with the City of Tshwane to find a site for the monument. 

"If you go to Senegal in Dakar for instance, you will be confronted with a 10-metre statue of the African Renaissance Monument.

"If you are in Algiers in Algeria, you will see this place where you go to and pay respect to the people of Algeria.

"In South Africa, we are doing the same because we believe that a tale of South Africa still needs to be told in its fullest.

"That is why we are acknowledging that our freedom was not exclusively because of South Africans. Humanity across the globe contributed.

"We are engaging with the province of Gauteng continuously and Tshwane to have this space where we will have our story told," he said.

Meanwhile, Minister Mthethwa said a number of events would take place to commemorate Heritage Month, which is held under the theme "The Year of Oliver Tambo: Celebrating our Liberation Heritage".

These include:

  • a gathering of African leaders in Namibia on 14 September on the the African World Heritage Fund
  • the official opening of the cultural village of Sqakatha (Ntenga) on 18 September
  • the memorial lecture on Gert Sibande, The Lion of the East, on 21 September
  • the hosting of ministers from Southern African Development Community countries to discuss the Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route between 19 and 21 September.
V Source: SAnews.gov.za