R11,2m monument for Samora Machel

The funding, which will be shared by the provincial and national art and culture departments, also will include commissioning a statue of Machel. Norwegian anti-apartheid artists will make the statue, which will be erected in Mbuzini, south of Komatipoort, at the site of the plane crash that killed Machel and 33 other Mozambican government officials on October 19 1986. Lebona Mosia of the provincial government said they believed the initiative would be a major economic boost and job-spinner for Mbuzini residents. A massive tourist destination? The improvements will include the construction of access roads, building an amphitheatre, a helipad, a library and a resource centre. “This site is expected to create jobs, business opportunities and become a massive tourist destination that will benefit the community and their municipality of Nkomazi,” he said. Mosia said the library would be opened before the 20th anniversary of the plane crash in October. The provincial arts and culture department is intending to apply to the South African Heritage Agency (Sahra) to declare the site a national heritage site. Machel was a leader of the Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (Frelimo), which toppled the colonial Portuguese government in 1974 through guerrilla warfare. He became the first black president of Mozambique in 1975. The cause of Machel’s plane crash remains a mystery, but it’s believed that South Africa’s apartheid government might have had a hand in causing the accident. ‘ News 24.

June 2006
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