6 July 2017
Cato Manor Cultural Museum Set to Boost Tourism and Create Jobs
The construction of the first phase of the Cato Manor Cultural Museum and Heritage Centre has had a direct impact on residents through job creation and the investing of millions of rands in their community. Phase one of the project, which cost R80 million and includes Queen Thomozile’s memorial, a forced removal museum and offices for the monarch, is complete.
Locals were employed in different stages of the project with some employed via sub-contractors. The main contractor employed 60 local labour throughout the project and trained 20 local people in bricklaying. This excludes those from the community who were engaged by sub-contractors at certain times during the development of the project.
Local contractors were engaged and most provided their services during construction. Furthermore, local business forums were engaged to provide a database for all potential local sub-contractors for easy reference.
Further jobs are expected to be created during the subsequent construction phases. The next phase of development will include an amphitheatre so local artists have a platform to exhibit their artistic talent.
The ultra-modern Cato Manor Museum and cultural precinct is expected to cost R350 million once complete and will include a heritage centre, a forced removal museum, a memorial of Queen Thomozile, a concession and a trade building as well as the Cato Manor Freedom Park. The museum is particularly significant as the remains of the late Queen Thomozile kaNdwandwe Zulu (King Goodwiil Zwelithini’s mother) are buried on the site.
There is also an anticipated tourism boom to the area by tourists visiting the museum which will tell the narrative of Cato Manor and uMkhumbane through exhibitions, song and dance. By doing so it will also add a rich cultural and historical value to the community.
The centre will also have 12 new positions to be filled. These positions, which include a director, curator, education officer, museum officer, research officer, museum guides, general assistants and a receptionist, have been approved by Council. All vacant positions will be advertised as per the Municipal Human Resources Policy and locals from the community are encouraged to apply if they are qualified for those positions. The Municipality follows a fair and transparent recruitment process. Our employment policies and practices are committed to developing a multi-cultural and diverse workforce that is non-racist, non-sexist, and non-discriminatory.
To ensure the success of local government, it is critical that stringent recruitment and selection tools are implemented as part of endeavours to employ the right people with the necessary competencies and attributes in order to accelerate service delivery.
The Cato Manor Cultural Museum was officially unveiled and handed over to the Municipality by the contractor on 28 May. It is not yet open to the public pending the installation of exhibitions.
The work on the exhibitions will be completed in the current financial year as the tender document for the exhibitions is complete and will be sent to the various Municipal Committees for endorsement and implementation.
The planned exhibitions will be three dimensional, with artworks of various sorts to be included together with modern day technology. Most of the artworks on display will be collected from local people so that a space is created for them to exhibit their works of art.
Moreover, the themes for exhibitions will cover uMkhumbane history (pre-colonial) as well as the origins of the name, forced removals in Cato Manor, the political, social and economic struggle of women in Cato Manor, the rise and fall of the Zulu Kingdom, Zulu Kings and Queens, uMkhumbane heroes and heroines, beerhalls in Durban and a host of other temporary exhibitions that will showcase the epochs of uMkhumbane history as and when necessary.
Issued by eThekwini Municipality’s Communications Unit.
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