New Robben Island Management Progressing

Online since 31.08.2016 • Filed under Industry news
New Robben Island Management Progressing

In a presentation to the Standing Committee on Economic Opportunities, Tourism and Agriculture in the Western Cape Provincial Parliament, we were briefed by the National Department of Public Works (DPW) and COEGA Development Corporation (CDC) about the progress made in the project management of Robben Island Museum (RIM). 

As Standing Committee Chairperson on Economic Opportunities, Tourism and Agriculture in the Western Cape, I welcome the reported progress in preservation of the heritage treasure that is Robben Island, and to enable it to be more accessible for visitors. As part of the Standing Committee’s oversight role, we will visit the island next year to look at the progress made by CDC. 

Because of several years of mismanagement of maintenance and transport at Robben Island, DPW brought CDC on-board, to speed up the process of development of Robben Island as an implementation agent. Although we remain sceptical to why DPW use an implementation agency from outside of the Western Cape, we welcome the progress that has been reportedly made by the CDC.

New generators have been acquired to stabilize the power plant, upgrades have been made in the harbour precinct and the Garrison Church has received the attention it deserves. There has also been an improvement in the transport solutions, by obtaining the services of 5 external service providers to ferry passengers to the island as a short-term solution. In the longer term, it is necessary to find a more permanent solution to the challenging task of ferrying passengers to and from the island.   

Robben Island Museum is one of the flagship attractions for tourism in the Western Cape, and a crucial part of our heritage. With the 43% increase in the number of visitors to the island in the 2015 festive season, it proves how important the improvements have been to date. 

As we approach Tourism Month, we look forward to engaging with RIM on their contribution to Western Cape’s tourism growth.

 

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