Kliptown Open Air Museum (Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication) in Klipspruit 298-Iq, Soweto, Gauteng
The Open Air Museum can be found on the western wing of the Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication which is situated in the centre of Kliptown.
It incorporates several structures including 10 concrete pillars that represent the 10 points of the famous Freedom Charter that was signed at this spot, as well as a red brick cone shaped monument. The museum is made up of informal traders, shops, art galleries and a hotel, convention and conferencing facilities restaurants and exhibition spaces incorporated into the Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication.
The museum is now a Heritage Site and stands for the right of people to their freedom as well as being significant to the creation of the Freedom Charter.
This museum was opened by the Executive Mayor Amos Masondo on 26 June 2007 with the following statement:
The story of the charter and its significance will be told time and time again, not only to the many visitors who will come here but to the broader public and indeed to humanity. The Charter identified challenges in a way that related to the world, It speaks of decent housing, affordable rentals, food, healthcare, transport, roads, lighting, playing fields, crèches, addressing the needs of the disabled people, leisure and recreation and the abolition of ghettos and laws that break up families.
Displays and Exhibitions
- Historical Documents
- News Clippings from New Age newspaper and Drum magazine
- Handmade wire structures of specific people such as Professor ZK Mathews and Walter Sisulu.
- Artefacts and taped recordings
In 1955 delegates of “The People's Parliament “met to adopt the Freedom Charter which is now the foundation of the Bill of Rights and the South African Constitution.
The ANC Youth League at the time of the apartheid Government started a movement of peaceful resistance against the injustices of the oppressive laws at the time. However circumstances only became worse. Professor Z.K. Mathews suggested a national convention of movements from South Africa to draw up a Freedom Charter for a “Democratic South Africa of the future.” The result of this suggestion was the famous meeting of 3 000 delegates coming together on a field in Kliptown on 25 and 26 June 1955.The meeting took place and the Freedom charter was signed. At that time Kliptown was a multiracial area which had been set up as a buffer zone between Soweto and Johannesburg.
Over the years the area became degraded but a project aimed at restoring it to its former glory took shape in the form of The Greater Kliptown Regeneration Development.
- Monday to Saturday, 10h00 - 17h00
- Sunday, 10h00 - 16h30
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