Group photo of participants with the Chief Guest Dr. Mzalendo Kibunjia and his delegation after the official opening ceremony

The Technical Tentative Listing workshop is the first activity within the larger World Heritage Nomination Program in Africa that aims at upstreaming the Continent’s Tentative Lists for the period 2016 to 2019. This is a joint project with CHDA’s counterpart for Francophone Africa, EPA, who are implementing the same program in Francophone Countries.

The program aims at strengthening the capacities of African Cultural and Natural Heritage professionals to develop up-to-standard Nomination Files and thus increasing the number of Nomination Dossiers successfully submitted to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre for consideration as World Heritage properties.

This project is being undertaken in close collaboration with, and with the participation of the World Heritage Centre (WHC), as well as the World Heritage Advisory Bodies – ICOMOS, IUCN and ICCROM.

As a foundation to the workshop, a questionnaire was sent out to the technical officesresponsible for the implementation of 1972 Convention in all the Anglophone and English-speaking Arab States Parties(Sudan, Libya and Egypt), seeking information on the status of their Tentative Lists. The responses to the questionnaire were analyzed and a detailed report developed. This report, together with results from previous work by AWHF and the WH Gap studies were the basis of the three-day workshop of experts, which reviewed the data, discuss the priorities and opportunities at the regional and national levels and finally developed a prioritized list of sites with clear potential OUV and supported by the relevant States Parties and Advisory Bodies. Subsequent Nomination Dossier training workshops under this program shall work on these selected sites to a level that may be successfully presented to the World Heritage Committee for inscription as World Heritage Sites.

Dr. Peter Howard of IUCN making his presentation to the participants

Dr. Peter Howard of IUCN making his presentation to the participants

The meeting brought together experts from both Anglophone and Arab speaking African countries. The States Parties attending included: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Tanzania, Uganda, Malawi, Sierra Leone, Ghana and Nigeria. Others were Sudan, South Sudan, Egypt Eritrea and Kenya. The World Heritage Centre was represented by the Chief of the African Desk, Mr. Edmond Moukala, the IUCN by Dr. Peter Howard and ICOMOS by Ms. Laura Robinson.

The Chief Guest during the opening ceremony was the Director General of the National Museums of Kenya, who is also the Chair of the Board of CHDA, Dr. Mzalendo Kibunjia. Dr, Kibunjia, who was accompanied by members of the National Museums of Kenya’s Directors’ Executive Committee (DEC) expressed NMK’s commitment to continue hosting CHDA, as well as providing support in form of human resources and utilities. He however appealed to other States Parties to come forward and support CHDA in one way or the other, especially in strengthening its human resource capacity and funding its running costs.

On the second day of the meeting, the Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts hosted participants to dinner at the Whitesands Hotel, where both the Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Hassan Wario and the Principal Secretary, Mr. Joe Okudo were available to meet and greet the participants. The Cabinet Secretary, in his address to the participants reiterated Dr. Mzalendo’s position and stated that the Ministry supported fully the work of CHDA and will do everything in its power to ensure that CHDA becomes vibrant and meets its mandate as a training and capacity building institution for heritage institutions and heritage professionals in Africa.

CHDA takes this opportunity to say ‘Thank you’ to all participants who made the workshop possible and successful; to the World Heritage Advisory bodies for their participation, contribution and invaluable advice during the workshop; to the AWHF for their support and partnership and to the National Museums of Kenya and the Ministry for Sports, Culture and the Arts for both hosting CHDA and supporting all its activities over the years.

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