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Acts 17/1972, 4/1976, 42/1976 (s. 33), 18/1984, 29/1990, 22/2001 (s. 4); S.I 468/1979.





  1. Short title.



  1. Establishment of Board.
  2. Functions of Board.
  3. Constitution of Board.
  4. Conditions of office of members.
  5. Disqualification for appointment as member.
  6. Vacation of office of member.
  7. Minister may require member to vacate office or suspend him.
  8. Filling of vacancies on Board.
  9. Meetings and procedure of Board.
  10. Remuneration and expenses of members of Board.
  11. Powers of Board.
  12. Appointment of Executive Director and other staff.
  13. Funds and accounts of Board.
  14. Validity of decisions and acts of Board.
  15. Local committees.


NATIONAL MUSEUMS 19.           National museums.



  1. Minister may declare national monuments.
  2. Notification of discovery of ancient monument or relic.
  3. Acquisition of fossils and other relics.
  4. Compulsory acquisition of monuments and relics.
  5. No excavation without consent of Executive Director.
  6. No alteration, damage or removal without consent of Executive Director.
  7. Notice of alterations and demolitions to be given to Executive Director.
  8. Duty to notify Executive Director of alterations or demolitions carried out without notice being given.
  9. Powers of Executive Director relating to alterations and demolitions.
  10. Calculating periods of time for the purposes of sections 26, 27 and 28.



  1. Interpretation in Part V.
  2. Contributions for pensions.
  3. Pension rights of contributors.
  4. Provisions relating to pensions.
  5. Pension contributions to be deducted.
  6. Board to contribute to Consolidated Revenue Fund.
  7. Disability benefits.
  8. Rights of persons transferred to Board.



  1. Entry upon land.
  2. By-laws.
  3. False statements.

SCHEDULE: Powers of Board.

AN ACT to establish a board of trustees to administer museums and monuments in Zimbabwe; to provide for the establishment and administration of museums; to provide for the preservation of ancient, historical and natural monuments, relics and other objects of historical or scientific value or interest; to provide for the payment of pensions and other benefits to members of the staff of the board of trustees; and to provide for matters incidental to or connected with the foregoing.

[Date of commencement: 1st October, 1972.]



1    Short title

This Act may be cited as the National Museums and Monuments Act [Chapter 25:11].

                       2    Interpretation

In this Act—

“ancient monument” means any—

  • building, ruin or structure or remaining portion of a building, ruin or structure; or
  • statue, grave, cave, rock shelter, midden, shell mound or other site or thing of a similar kind; which is known or believed to have been erected, constructed or used in Zimbabwe before the 1st January, 1890, but does not include an ancient working;

“ancient working” means any shaft, cutting, tunnel or stope which was made for mining purposes before the 1st January, 1890;

“Board” means the Trustees of the National Museums and Monuments established by section three;

“Executive Director'' means the executive director appointed in terms of section fourteen;

“fixed date” means the 1st October, 1972;

“fossil” includes any ichnite or other fossil impression, track or trail, but does not include coal or diatomite or any other mineral which the Minister, after consultation with the Minister responsible for mines, may specify by statutory instrument;

“member” means a member of the Board;

“Minister” means the Minister of Home Affairs or any other Minister to whom the President may, from time to time, assign the administration of this Act;

“monument” means any—

(a)   ancient monument; or (b) area of land which—

(i)      is of historical, archaeological, palaeontological or other scientific value or interest; or (ii)      has a distinctive geological formation; or

  • waterfall, cave, grotto, avenue of trees, old tree or old building or remaining portion of an old building; or
  • other object, whether natural or constructed by man, of historical, archaeological or other scientific value or interest;

“national monument” means a monument which has been declared in terms of subsection (1) of section twenty to be a national monument;

“national museum” means any of the buildings situate at Bulawayo, Harare and Mutare known as the National Museum, the Queen Victoria Museum and the Mutare Museum respectively, and any museum declared in terms of subsection (2) of section nineteen to be a national museum;

“relic” means any—

  • fossil of any kind; or
  • drawing or painting on stone or petroglyph known or commonly believed to have been executed in Zimbabwe prior to the 1st January, 1890; or
  • weapon, implement, utensil or ornament of historical, archaeological or other scientific value or interest known or commonly believed to have been used in Zimbabwe prior to the 1st January, 1890; or
  • anthropological or archaeological contents of any ancient monument or ancient working; or
  • other object, whether natural or made or executed by man, of historical, archaeological or other scientific value or interest which is prescribed as being a relic for the purposes of this Act; “specimen” means any object held by the Board for the purpose of exhibition, research or study. PART II


                       3    Establishment of Board

There is hereby established a board of trustees, to be known as the Trustees of the National Museums and Monuments, which shall be a body corporate capable of suing or being sued in its corporate name and, subject to this Act, of performing all such acts as bodies corporate may by law perform.

                       4    Functions of Board

  • The national museums and other property of the Board shall be held in trust for the people of Zimbabwe.
  • Subject to this Act, the functions of the Board shall be—
  • to administer museums and national monuments vested in or controlled by the Board; and
  • to provide for the preservation of monuments, relics and other objects of historical or scientific value or interest; and
  • when required by the Minister, to investigate and report upon any matter relating to any monument or relic, including the desirability of declaring any monument to be a national monument, and
  • to compile and keep a register of all national monuments and of any relics that it has acquired or that have been brought to its notice.

                       5    Constitution of Board

  • Subject to subsection (2), the Board shall consist of such members, being not less than five in number, as may be appointed by the Minister after consultation with the President and in accordance with any directions the President may give him.
  • Where one or more national museums are situated in the area of a city or municipal council, that council may submit to the Minister a list of the names of not less than two persons for appointment to the Board and the Minister shall appoint one of those persons to be a member in terms of subsection (1).

                       6    Conditions of office of members

  • A member shall, subject to this Part, hold office for a period of five years.
  • Subject to section twelve, a member shall hold office on such conditions as the Minister may in his case fix.
  • A retiring member shall be eligible for reappointment.