DEDZA – The Department of Museums and Monuments has opened three public viewing sites at the renowned Chongoni Rock Art World Heritage Site in Dedza.

The sites have been opened at Chentcherere, Mphunzi and Namzere.

Located within Chongoni Forest Reserve, Chongoni Rock Art has 127 rock paintings which is also the highest concentration of rock art in Central Africa.

According to Department of Museums and Monuments Director Elizabeth Gomani Chindebvu, Chongoni Rock Art is part of the African Development Bank Group and Malawi Government cultural development 4 year program.

She said the program is aimed at promoting investment and competitiveness in the tourism sector.

Chongoni rock art has red and white paintings which were painted by the Akafula and the Chewas.

“These paintings were used to communicate ideas and values. There is also a strong connection between the paintings and contemporary traditions of initiation and also the Chewa Nyau Culture,” she said.

Chindebvu further revealed that Malawi has over 200 monuments and innumerable relics and objects as well as intangible cultural heritage from the Stone age to iron age.

Some of the institutions displaying and telling Malawi’s stories include Top Mandala, Chichiri museum, Karonga museum and Bua.

UNESCO declared Lake Malawi National Park and Chongoni Rock Art as World Heritage Sites in 1984 and 2006 respectively.

Some of the local Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) on UNESCO list include Gule wankulu, Vimbuza and Tchopa.

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