While the continent celebrated Africa Day yesterday, 25 May the Arts and Culture Minister, Mr Nathi Mthethwa opened the 4thAfrican Union Pan-African Cultural Congress (PACC4), at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg under the theme, Cultural Diversity for Africa’s Development. The African Union Pan-African Cultural Congress, collaboration between Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) and the African Union Commission runs from 25-27 May 2015.
This Congress amongst others sought to fast-track and realizes the African Union’s vision for an ‘integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa,’ as envisaged in Agenda 2063. This is also a platform to review the achievements and to identify challenges on implementation of instruments related to the promotion of cultural diversity.
“This gathering is a stepping stone, a platform for embracing that larger identity of being African in the country, the continent and the world! Indeed embodied in this realization is the transient spirit of a dynamic, forward-moving and progressive Africa that is destined to emerge as the leader of the world. This is, indeed, an African Century”, said Minister Mthethwa during the opening of the congress.
The theme for this significant conference is intuitively linked to the theme of the Africa Month, ‘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. The conference brings together the most influential leaders and decision makers in the continent.
“We believe culture can strengthen the ties that bind us. Essentially, it is intended to foster self-love and pride among the people of the continent”, concluded Mthethwa.
Africa Month activities scheduled from 27-31 May 2015 are as follows:
- The Africa Month Extravaganza Fashion Show will take place on 27 May 2015 at 17h00, Museum Africa Design (MOAD), 281 Commissioner Street, in Johannesburg. We are Africa Fashion Spectacular is aimed at highlighting and celebrating Africa’s finest creative minds in fashion design.
- Africa Month Film Festival will take place on 28-29 May 2015 at 11:00, Mayibuye Centre in Galeshewe, Kimberley to showcase films from different African continent.
- The DAC in partnership with Vuyane Association will host, The Rain Dance on 28 May at 19h00, Market theatre in Newtown Precinct, Johannesburg.
- The DAC will host Africa Dialogue entitled “Entrepreneurs Unplugged” at the University of Fort Hare Audio Visual Centre in Alice, Eastern Cape on 28 May 2015 at 18h00.
- The DAC will host the 1st Annual AfriGospel Unite Festival on 28 May 2015 at 18:00, Durban Roof Top, near Engen Ushaka in KwaZulu Natal.
- Then on Friday the 29 May 2015 at 18h00, DAC will host the Africa Month Colloquium titled, “The long day of ideas and the long night of poets,” at Johannesburg Theatre in Gauteng.
- There will also be an Africa Month Basket Exhibition from 29-05 May at Steve Biko Foundation Centre, Ginsberg in East London. This exhibition will not only focus on the medium being used to make the baskets, i.e., grass, but will bring to the fore the contemporary application of basket weaving.
- Koze Kuse! “Mpaka-Morning,” Africa Dance Explosion taking place on Saturday, 30 May 2015 at Kings Park in Durban, KwaZulu Natal. The Koze Kuse – Africa Dance Explosion, therefore brings young people from various AFRICAN countries together to enjoy music and dance!
- The department will also support Africa Day Reggae Festival on the 30th of May 2015 at Makhado, Limpopo. The annual Africa Day reggae festival is a colourful creative and captivating celebration of African unity and culture through reggae music and a cultural exhibition.
- The department will host Africa Gospel Fest, a gospel explosion with seasoned gospel artists from the continent and choirs singing African hymns. This festival will take place on 31 May 2015 at 14h00, Esikhawini College in KwaZulu Natal. The programme will kick-start with a cultural parade and a motorcade at 12:00.
These events are part of the Africa Month activities to promote African identity, as well as to entrench African values and ethics in the continent.
Enquiries: Sandile Memela: 082 800 3750