Minister to open Pan-African Cultural Congress

Monday, May 25, 2015

Pretoria - Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa will today open the 4th African Union Pan-African Cultural Congress (PACC4), which will take stock of the challenges and record good practices on cultural diversity to enhance development.

The event, from 25 - 27 May at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg, is hosted in conjunction with the African Union Commission under the theme “Unity in Cultural Diversity for Africa’s Development”.

As part of celebrating Africa Month, the PACC4 brings together the most influential leaders and decision makers in the continent to discuss Africa development, challenges and share good practices on cultural diversity.

Cultural diversity is very critical to achieving the Agenda 2063 vision for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa.

The discussion will include the exchanges of ideas and experiences among arts and culture professionals, researchers, creators/producers of culture, decision/policy makers in the area of cultural diversity in Africa.

It will also review the achievements and identify challenges on implementation of instruments related to the promotion of cultural diversity; as well as to gather inputs and best practices for the formulation and implementation of cultural policies and programmes in Africa in the area of cultural diversity.

These objectives are also in line with the Africa Month theme “We Are Africa - Opening the doors of learning and culture to promote peace and friendship from Cape to Cairo”.

The theme aims to encourage and strengthen socio-economic and political integration, as well as to enhance social cohesion within the continent.

Minister Mthethwa said the department is delighted to host some of Africa’s best minds in the quest for total liberation and self-determination through the arts, culture and heritage sector.

“There is a wind of change and self-determination blowing through the African continent. It carries us with it, and it is in this context that South Africa ratified the Charter for African Cultural Renaissance last October.

“We have devoted the entire month of May to Africa Month as we celebrate and interrogate our African identity, arts and culture, music and cuisine, among others,” said Minister Mthethwa.

Since 1976, the Heads of State and of Government in the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) adopted the African Cultural Charter, which committed African countries to work out a cultural national policy and integrate their cultural development plans in the overall programmes for economic and social development. –