Massive heritage statue planned in Grahamtown

Grahamstown reputation as the City of Saints could become a thing of the past thanks to an ambitious plan to build a massive statue on a township hillside.

The African-influenced statue, the design of which would be inspired by Brazil’s iconic Christ the Redeemer, would be made from kaolin mined in the area and be the centrepiece of a heritage route project to honour Xhosa heroes and other marginalised people who lived in the area.

The idea to build a 35m-plus statue on Zion Hill overlooking the city is the brainchild of Sizwe Mda – the great-great grandson of the last king of the Ndebele in Zimbabwe, King Lobengula – as a way of healing the wounds of the past and attracting tourists.

The plan has been given the thumbs up by the Makana municipality and other tourism experts who feel showcasing the melting pot of cultures by establishing a heritage route in Fingo Village will add tourism value to the area.

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