28 September 2012

SAPS WOMEN’S NETWORK 2012 Heritage Talk Programme director, Honourable SAPS Members (All Protocol observed),Colleagues & general public, I greet you all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and in Peace and Harmony.Ms Mankayi &Mr Ningi,it gives me pleasure to share the stage with you today ,more especially in this important event. For and on behalf of the Museum& the entire Heritage sector, it is our responsibility to serve you with dignity and pride. I’m happy that now our services are utilised locally unlike in the past where we used to get invitations of this nature from outside Grahams town. The event that you have organised here is very vital in our Heritage. How I wish it won’t be only an event of this year only. You have made a good example for all other public sector departments to learn from. Heritage is for all of us. I believe in inter-departmental collaborations since they forge useful ties and unity amongst public sector employees. Results of what you have ploughed here today may not show now but in the near future. For example :You ask any orchard farmer if he can plough fruit tree and within the same year it produces fruit, if he won’t get worried that his tree will not last him as he expects. By that I mean perseverance prevails. All of us in this hall have to take responsibility install our lost Cultural Values & norms to combat Domestic violence in Women and Children. This is a result of lack of respect in our Cultural diversity. For decades Heritage has been mis-represented and mis-interpreted.It is in our hands to somewhat help correct those wrongs.It might take time but we must give up.Eli lixesha lokuba singakhaleli ubisi oluchithekileyo,sijonge phambili.We need to make viable change& shine in our corners. One of the political struggle icon,former president Thabo Mbeki,once moved parliament in his 1996 Draft Constitution speech-“ I’m an African-decendant of Nongqawuse,etc”.Indeed he was right in standing for what he feels strong about,proud of his identity.Then again my Hero the late Lucky Dube in one of his songs THE OTHER SIDE,my favourite argues a point about being proud of who you are,it goes like this “Two guys namely Jackson and Themba appreciates less of what they have,Jackson –Jamaican slave descendant wishes he was home in Africa,His desperation to come to Africa can even make him catch any mode of transport that can bring him here,whilst lucky Themba on the other side,who hails from Soweto everyday he goes to the Airport willing to take a plane out of this place.”That a real situation even some of us ,to wish to give up what you have for something you do not know it’s pros and Cons. Imagine if one day we can be ashamed to call ourselves South Africans due to our wrong doings. Heritage as a subject is complex & a contested terrain,some others argues that it is selected.One of the shining examples would be a case of Ubuntu-Humanity which even our Govt has adopted it’s principle through Batho Pele Principles. Isixhosa sinentetho ethi xa ulinde into engasoze yenzele-bathi ulinde ukuza kukaNxele.My institution recently organised a public lecture about this African son whose whereabouts are unkwown,many of us took this general not even aware that his family still exists, We are lucky to form part of larger Grahams town community with its rich History and Heritage. We cannot entirely divorce Heritage from History, they do support each other, and for instance Heritage mostly relies on History, although History can exist on its own. For example when we commemorate Steve Biko’s death, we term it Heritage but what happened to Him is History occurrence. And the Marikana tragedy also forms part of the explanation. Before I support my argument further with examples and explanation on a PowerPoint presentation, I want to share with you my disappointment towards the appreciation and existence of my dept.Dept of Arts and Culture which has got a mandate to be Custodians of our History and Heritage, but to my surprise it is very underfunded, it is worse to what goes to Museums. You ask yourself how it will be possible for us to fulfil our mission and vision. This is what I’ll leave you with to digest. I thank you and please stay tuned for section. Guest speaker speech by :Phumeza N.Mntonintshi-Albany Museum,Ght.

26 September 2012


The Albany Museum Public Relations and Marketing officer Mr Zongezile Matshoba and Mark Manditha the education officer of Amathole Museum will be accompanying four learners to Robben Island Museum Isivivane Solwazi 2012 Spring School Nation Building Camp. The Mobile Museum will take the following learners:

Albany Museum’s Public Relations and Marketing officer will be facilitating the print media elective. On Robben Island they will be in a very privileged position to explore the island, interact with Living Heritage Resources (ex-political prisoners) discover the history of the island and engage with peers around the theme of Spring School 2012.The theme of Spring School 2012 is to find an ex-political prisoner who was imprisoned on Robben Island however anyone who was incarcerated for political reasons is acceptable. Before the trip the learners must research the topic. They will also bring along a cultural/traditional/customary attire/costume or dress of another culture. They must be able to explain when it was worn, by whom and why is it important to them or their community.
The Spring School will begin on the 28th September  and run until the  6th October 2012. The Spring School will be attended by students from all provinces of South Africa, Namibia, Rwanda, Burundi, Congo and Zimbabwe. The Mobile Museum co-ordinator Ms Nozipho Madinda would like to thank Robben Island Museum for this opportunity.

24 September 2012


Heritage Day is commemorated on the 24th of September each year, and through commemoration of the National day, South Africans are provided with an opportunity to celebrate their cultural diversity whilst at the very some time affirming their country’s nationhood.

All government departments are expected to venture into a partnership with the Department of Sport Recreation Arts & Cultures it has been mandated by the provincial legislature to organise and ensure that the fundamental objectives of commemorating Heritage Day and other heritage related events are realized and revitalized.
Albany Museum staff has this opportunity of celebrating cultural diversity by wearing traditional clothes, singing songs and dancing (umxhentso wesintu).The Mobile Museum co-ordinator Nozipho Madinda  would like to thank the Albany Museum staff for taking part, realized and revitalized this event.

17 September 2012

Museum access gaining momentum

By: Zongezile Matshoba

ALL ON BOARD: Shaw Park Combined School learners
who could not wait for the Museum visit

The Lotto funded programme of ensuring that disadvantaged schools are bussed to the Albany Museum is gaining momentum. Twelve grade 7 farm school learners who were all but one coming for the very first time to the Museum were overwhelmed by the visit. Shaw Park Combined School is on the outskirts of Bathurst, a small town on your way to Port Alfred.  

“We first heard about the tour last Wednesday when the Museum visited the school,” said Xolelwa Ntlokwana, aged 16. They have been dreaming about the trip ever since.

Seemingly, the wait for Monday was an unbearable torture for them. Many were not really sure if it was all true, and were busy peeping through their classroom windows early this morning. There was a sigh of relief and the excitement grew when they saw the Museum bus. The chase for seats near the window began.

“We only believe the whole thing when it reached the tarred road,” added Ntlokwana.

Wow, planets! And dinosaurs!  For Sinalo Ncumisa, 12, and Msindisi Ntlokwana, 14, the two galleries were a show-stopper. The two were dumbfounded.    

All the learners agree that the trip has made a huge difference in the learning. Textbooks are limiting. These learners were at last able to make more sense of what is in the textbooks, like seeing the actual size of the many mammals that they have read about.

13 September 2012

Online video featuring Albany Natural Science Museum

An interesting video profiling the Albany Natural Science Museum has been posted online by SkyBok. This video shows the interesting Earth and Space gallery, Mammals Gallery, Birds Gallery, the Egyptian Mummy Gallery, the Invertebrates Gallery and the Museum’s Front Foyer.
SkyBok.net utilises Google Maps to display location and information on local points of interest, providing video profiles of venues to gain more insight into what they are about.
This is a must see video for all tour guides, students and visitors that need a quick glance of what is on offer at  Albany Natural Science Museum.
To watch and share the video, please visit: http://www.skybok.net/venue/108-Albany-Museum
The Albany Museum complex also boasts a History Museum which features the history of the 1820 Settlers, and that of the prominent Eastern Cape traditional leaders. There is also the Albany Observatory Museum, known for its unique Camera Obscura which visualises what goes on around Grahamstown right on the table.
These three museum building are opens to all every Monday to Friday, between 09h00 and 16h30.    
 For further queries, please e-mail:-albanymuseum@ru.ac.za  

06 September 2012

Access to the Museum - Lotto boost for disadvantaged schools

by: Zongezile Matshoba

Albany Museum may have lost out on its application to the national lottery distribution agency for infrastructural development, but its Mobile Museum Services is smiling all the way. Lotto  supported the application for a 13-seater mini bus, aimed to take especially disadvantaged learners to gain more access to the Museum.

 For years, the Museum has been reaching out to farm, rural and township schools, using its panel van, kindly donated by the Grahamstown Rotary Club. Nozipho Madinda, the Mobile Museum Officer, has always wanted to ensure that the disadvantaged learners also get the opportunity to experience the actual Museum over and above the lessons that they were getting from the Mobile Service.

MUSEUM ACCESS: Learners from Andrew Moyakhe Primary enjoying
the break and the lunch packs after being given a rare access to the Museum 
Picture By: Zongezile Matshoba

The wonderful opportunity, made possible by the gracious lotto contribution means that disadvantaged schools will no longer be limited to artefacts taken to their schools. Over 20 000 learners have an opportunity to be fetched from their schools, and gain a practical experience of the Museum. The funding has also ensured that these learners get lunch packs after their lessons. Museum is also busy developing learning material with information and activities that will enhance their learning.

Albany Museum has natural science, social history and a Victorian Lifestyle with a Camera Obscura buildings, and three heritage sites buildings. The three museum buildings have galleries that cover a variety of curriculum-based topics such as planets, plants, biodiversity,  history, art and culture.

September, known as the heritage month, tourism month, arbor month, and reading month, is without doubt an ideal period to kicks-tart the Access-to-the-Museum Project.     
 Interested schools are invited to make their booking early, by contacting Nozipho Madinda at 046 622 2312, or via her email, N.Madinda@ru.ac.za