Speech by Minister Mashatile on the occasion of the opening of the //Hapo Museum at the Freedom Park

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22 Apr 2013

Programme Director

Deputy President Kgalerma Mothlante

The Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture, Dr. Joe Phaahla

Ministers and Deputy Ministers here present

The Executive Mayor of the City of Tshwane, Councillor Ramokgopa

The CEO of the Freedom Park, Mr Fana Jiyane

Members of the Council of the Freedom Park

Honoured Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen:

It gives me great pleasure to welcome all of you today as we open the //hapo museum here at the Freedom Park.

Freedom Park stands as a monument to our country’s freedom and democracy; founded on the values of Ubuntu, equality and dignity for all.

It is dedicated to honoring the memory of all those who gave their lives in the many struggle that shaped our society.  

It is therefore fitting that we open the //hapo museum, which is the last phase of the Freedom Park project, during freedom month.

Through //hapo, which means a dream, we will tell a comprehensive and inclusive narrative of where we come from as a people and where we are headed.

We will once more make the point that ours is a nation united in its diversity and that we have a shared future.

In particular //hapo will tell the story of the Southern African region dating back 3.6 billion years in an interactive manner.

It will showcase South Africa’s rich and colorful history, from creation to the current era of reconciliation and nation building.

We have no doubt therefore that what we are launching today is among the best heritage museums in our country; a place of reflection and a platform where as a nation we will together celebrate our freedom, enhance reconciliation and nation building and inspire hope within ourselves.

We take this opportunity to urge all South Africans to treat Freedom Park as a national asset that it truly is.

We also urge South Africans to visit Freedom Park and experience its unique offering and to celebrate the triumph of the human spirit.

Freedom Park is a place for all South Africans and a fitting tribute to the freedom and democracy we today enjoy.

Programme  Director, since today we are launching the final phase of Freedom Park, we are bringing to life the vision of the founding father of our democratic nation; uTata Nelson Mandela, who said in 1999 that;

“ The day shall not be far off, when we shall have a people’s shrine, a freedom park, where we shall honour with the dignity they deserve those  who endured pain so we should experience the joy of freedom”

We think of Tata Mandela today as we celebrate the fulfillment of his vision.

Let freedom reign! Long live Tata Madiba!

Thank you.