Freedom Route for city and midlands

2008-09-11 00:00

Pietermaritzburg, with its rich history, will finally have a Freedom Route that tourists can embark on to learn more about the city’s involvement in the liberation of this country. This was announced at the Peter Brown memorial seminar held at the UKZN yesterday.

The route will be launched from the city hall on September 25, a day after National Heritage Day. It will take tourists on a journey, showing the connections that various struggle heroes had with the city.

This route will not only boost the city’s tourism sector, but is expected to create opportunities of employment as well.

It will start from Freedom Square, include the city hall and make its way to the old Pietermaritzburg Station where Mahatma Gandhi was thrown off a train in 1893. It then stretches to Imbali, where Nelson Mandela made his last speech before he was arrested in 1962 and on to Georgetown in Edendale.

It will also incorporate Project Gateway (the old prison), Mandela’s capture site near Howick, the Alan Paton Centre and struggle archives and Sobantu, from where two stalwarts of the ANC, Anton “Mfenendala” Xaba and Trueman Magubane, hail.

Msunduzi municipal manager, Rob Haswell said that it has been a long time coming to have such a route in the city. “If any city in the whole world should have a Freedom Route, it is indeed Pietermaritzburg,” he said.

Project manager for Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, Abie Wentzel, said that a brochure outlining the route will be launched and that they create packages to boost tourism.

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