Question NW2315 to the Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture

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18 November 2021 - NW2315

Profile picture: Joseph, Mr D

Joseph, Mr D to ask the Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture

What (a) progress has been made by his department to ensure that the infrastructure at Robben Island is maintained at international heritage status, given the procurement agreement between Robben Island Museum and the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure and (b) turn-around financial strategy has been successfully implemented after the specified museum has been severely impacted by a lack of tourism due to the COVID-19 pandemic?


(a). The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) is the Custodian of the Robben Island and therefore responsible for the maintenance. DPWI has developed a new strategy and approach to improve the effectiveness and efficiency on rendering maintenance services known as the Total Facilities Management (TFM) programme.

The TFM solution combines services streams across the “hard” (technical maintenance) and “soft” (cleaning, hygiene, security, etc.) services under the management of a single Service Provider (SP) who also manages sub-contractors.

Known alternatively as a one -stop-shop, the benefits of TFM include minimizing management and task duplication, effecting improvement in service reliability and efficiency, and streamlining interoperability of facility services thus reducing the operational and maintenance expenditure while optimizing delivery.

DPWI is currently busy with the finalization of the procurement process of the TFM contract for a period of 36 months. The procurement process will be finalized before the end of December 2021. The TFM contract will guarantee that all maintenance needs are attended on a regular basis and will ensure that UNESCO international heritage status for the Robben Island is also maintained.

In the interim, DPWI is maintaining the facility through various term contracts. This is carried-out by DPWI Cape Town regional office.

(b). The Robben Island Museum is currently busy with implementing financial turn-around strategies to deal with a challenge of financial constraints. The measures implemented has so far been successful in preventing job losses at the Museum. This process is ongoing and the entity still faces major obstacles to recovery and will be dependent on the opening of tourism activities until a final strategy is in place informed by the development of RIM’s business model.

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