From the news desk

Green light for CT Palestinian museum

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The Kaaf Trust has finally received approval from the City of Cape Town to continue construction on the Al Kaaf Human Rights Centre, after the building was put on hold for nearly three years due to several objections. This includes complaints over the height of the proposed development, with the City resolving to limit the centre to 7 floors. The Human Rights Centre is set to incorporate the much anticipated Palestine Museum.

Although the plight of the Palestinians is set to be a major fixture of the museum, the centre as a whole will seek to focus on the broader issues affecting the Middle Eastern region.

Kaaf Trust Chairperson, Dr. Anwah Nagia described the City’s approval as an ‘elation to the millions of Palestinians’, who could now have a voice at the southernmost tip of Africa. He was hopeful the Museum could be used to clear up the misunderstandings surrounding the Palestinian question.

“We have a team of people that have now assembled themselves in quite good enthusiasm to get the building done. We will hopefully start this week, possibly as early as today to finish the construction. We’ve been delayed for three years, and great costs we’ve had to endure. But alhamdulillah the message of the Palestinian narrative will come out in full glory now,” he stated.

There remains a possibility that the complainants who brought forth the bid to halt construction may take further action, but Nagia said that should such an objection arise, they would take the issue to the public more vociferously. He questioned why those involved would seek to oppose the construction of a mosque, library and human rights centre.

“It defies all logic and decency, besides the politic undertones that it brings. We were not going to do any conspiracy theories as to who is behind it, but we certainly can identify a few business persons in and around the project who have objected to certain issues, and made our lives a misery,” he claimed.

With construction now back underway, the centre is set to feature several unique initiatives and displays. This includes a three-pronged collaboration with the Church of Bethlehem, and the Norwegian and South African chapter of the Kairos Foundation, for the painting of 14 artwork depictions of Nabi Esa (A.S). This will be on display at the museum.

Other features include the display of several cultural artefacts, some as old as 900-years, an exhibit detailing the region’s history during the Ottoman Empire, and a tiled floor representing each town and village in Palestine pre-Nakbah. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)

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