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World Heritage Convention

Decision 39 COM 7B.33
Maloti-Drakensberg Park (Lesotho / South Africa) (C/N 985bis)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 37 COM 8B.18, adopted at its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013),
  3. Welcomes the commencement, by the State Party of Lesotho, of new research and documentation of rock art within Sehlabathebe National Park, building on the Analysis of Rock Art in Lesotho (ARAL) project, as well as the study on the landscape elements, encompassing both ethnographic research and oral history, in order to identify their potential contribution to Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), and encourages the State Party of Lesotho to ensure that this essential work receives high priority and adequate ongoing resources, and requests the State Party of Lesotho to submit the outcomes to the World Heritage Centre, for review by ICOMOS;
  4. Notes the State Party of South Africa’s agreement to carry-out an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the proposed cableway, and requests that it should include a detailed Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA), in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment and ICOMOS’ Guidelines on HIAs for Cultural World Heritage properties, and also requests the State Party of South Africa to submit a copy of the completed assessment to the World Heritage Centre, for review by the Advisory Bodies;
  5. Also welcomes the cooperation of both States Parties in updating the Maloti-Drakensberg Joint Management Plan from both a natural and cultural World Heritage perspective, and urges the States Parties to ensure that invasive alien species and fire management are adequately addressed in the Joint Management Plan; including provisions for ensuring the resources required for the implementation of these measures;
  6. Further welcomes the progress regarding transnational collaboration and efforts towards establishment of a buffer zone area to the south of Sehlabathebe National Park, and further requests the States Parties to submit a minor boundary modification to the World Heritage Centre to recognise the buffer zones, as soon as they have been formalized;
  7. Notes with appreciation that some progress has been made, and that further initiatives are proposed, in training of staff within the Sehlabathebe management base, and also encourages further expansion of this training, so as to ensure that suitably qualified staff are available within both the Department of Culture and the Sehlabathebe National Park;
  8. Also notes with appreciation that the two States Parties have commenced updating the cultural heritage management plan, which will incorporate risk preparedness and disaster response plans, and requests furthermore the States Parties to jointly inform the World Heritage Centre as soon as this plan is approved and to provide a copy of it to the World Heritage Centre, for review by the Advisory Bodies;
  9. Further notes with appreciation that the State Party of Lesotho is developing a Biodiversity Resources Management Bill, as a matter of priority, and requests moreover the State Party of Lesotho to inform the World Heritage Centre, as soon as this Bill is approved, and to provide a copy to the World Heritage Centre;
  10. Finally requests the States Parties to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2016, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, and the related matters set out in Decision 37 COM 8B.18, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017.
Decision Code
39 COM 7B.33
States Parties 2
State of conservation reports
2015 Maloti-Drakensberg Park
Decisions adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015)
Context of Decision