/ 5 November 2007

Jo’burg street names to go green

The naming and renaming of streets and public places in Johannesburg should be after flora and fauna and not people, according to the city’s new naming policy released on Monday.

Anyone who wants a place named after a person will have to provide a detailed motivation, including a profile of the person and why he or she is worthy of the honour.

The new policy stipulates that, to avoid unnecessary expenses, renamings will be done only where there is a need, and following public consultation.

A renaming committee will assess all proposals and make recommendations to the council through the mayoral committee.

Recently, Hans Strijdom Drive, a main road running through Randburg and crossing the N1, was renamed Malibongwe Drive.

Malibongwe” means ”to give praise”. ”Malibongwe igama lamakhosikazi [Praise the women’s voice]” was a slogan normally used by women during apartheid protest marches and gatherings.

Johannesburg Development Agency head Lael Bethlehem said earlier this year that the new street name would still remind South Africans of Strijdom as the slogan was used in protest against his government.

Hendrik Verwoerd Drive in Randburg also has a new name: Bram Fischer Drive, after the anti-apartheid activist.