DA takes plight of Middelburg Museum to Bhisho

 

Broken window frames at the Middelburg Museum tells a tale of sad neglect while the Inxuba Yethu Municipality and the Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture disputes its transfer.

The Democratic Alliance will continue to fight to keep the doors of the Middelburg Museum open. The museum currently has only one staff member and the building is in a very poor condition.

We believe that public institutions such as museums are places where nation building is promoted and where members of the public can come together and actively participate in cultural activities and education programmes.

I wrote to Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture MEC Pemmy Majodina earlier this year to bring the plight of the Middelburg Museum to her attention.  The Inxuba Yethu Municipality resolved in 2014 and again in 2016 to have the museum transferred to the Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture.

I welcome the reply from MEC Majodina, that the Middelburg Museum was  “…identified as those areas whose history and heritage needed to be preserved”.

She added that “…the municipality is no longer interested in managing the museum despite its location as a key resource and depository of information in that area” and that “the department relied on the municipality to play their part in sustaining its collections, compensation of staff and maintenance of the building, while the department continues to provide technical and professional advice and support”.  For the MEC’s letter, click here:  Middelburg Museum reply from MEC P Majodina

It is clear that the department cannot rely on the Inxuba Yethemba Municipality.  I therefore appeal to the MEC to step in and save this institution by including it as a provincially-run museum as a matter of urgency.

I have submitted legislature questions to the MEC for details about the way forward, including time-frames for a transfer.

The DA will not rest until this matter is resolved.  It is up to our generation to leave a positive legacy for generations to come. — Nosimo Balindlela MPL, Shadow MEC for Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture