In a regular meeting of the government-appointed Cultural Heritage Council Tuesday, Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Alexis Tam Chon Weng called for strengthened efforts in civil society to ensure that the city’s listed cultural heritage sites are always properly protected, by citing Monday’s blaze that gutted the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, according to a statement by the Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC) .
According to the statement, Tam, who chairs the council, expressed regret and concern about the fire in the French capital at the beginning of Tuesday’s meeting, saying that the catastrophe served as a warning to remind Macau’s civil society about the need to protect the city’s cultural heritage sites.
Citing the Notre-Dame fire, Tam urged the Cultural Affairs Bureau, which he oversees, to strengthen its communication with the owners of privately-owned but officially-listed cultural heritage sites in the city, with the aim of ensuring that the properties are always properly protected, according to the statement.
During the meeting, IC officials insisted that the bureau has always been paying close attention to the fire safety of the city’s cultural heritage sites.
According to the statement, IC officials also said that with reference to some other UNESCO World Heritage Site cities, the bureau planned to set up a centre monitoring the status of Macau’s cultural heritage sites, with the aim of reducing the risk that the city’s heritage sites could suffer damage.
The council comprises IC officials, officials from a number of other government entities, and a number of members from civil society appointed by the government.
The statement did not mention where the meeting took place.
Concerning the council’s meetings, there are three scenarios. Normally, the meetings are conducted behind closed doors but the government invites reporters to ask officials questions right afterwards. Occasionally, the meetings are open to the media. Occasionally, the government does not invite the media for a meeting at all and afterwards merely issues a statement about it, such as Tuesday’s meeting.(Macaunews)