Mar 2023 1st edition

Charting Tshwane’s liberation heritage route

Written by: Sihle Manda

The formation of the democratic South Africa was not a singular event. It was a decades-long tumultuous voyage of dispossession and deprivation that would ultimately lead to freedom.

Twenty-nine years into democracy, the Department of Tourism has embarked on a journey of displaying this history in a tourism route reel.

The department is developing a Tshwane Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route, a sub-route of the South African Chapter. It recently took tour guides and tour operators on an educational tour of the Tshwane sites that played a role in the liberation struggle, to share information about the sites, services and experiences they offer.

“We wanted the operators and guides just to know more about each of the sites that are part of the route,” says Deputy Director for Experiences and Route Development at the department Fundiswa Mba

The Union Buildings is the official seat of South Africa's government that houses The Presidency. Completed in 1913, it was originally built to house the public service for the Union of South Africa. The Union Buildings also hostedThe Palace of Justice is where former President Nelson Mandela and other African National Congress (ANC) leaders were the accused in the Rivonia Trial. Picture: GCIS

The plan is to launch the Tshwane Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route during the 2022/23 financial year.

The route is expected to fill a wide open hole in the telling of the painful history of the country.

Ga-Motlhe was established as required by the 1932 New Group Areas Act. This was an administrative building where documents such as marriage and identity documents were issued to marginalised black citizens. Those who transgressed the law were also detained at this centre. Picture: GCISThe Old Synagogue was originally a Jewish house of worship which was converted into an apartheid court in 1952. This is the building which heard the Treason Trial where ANC leaders were tried for acts of sabotage intended to overthrow the government of that time. Picture: GCIS






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