/ 28 August 2008

Parties in court bid to challenge Durban name changes

Opposition parties have taken the battle over Durban’s controversial street-renaming process to the courts, the Mercury reported on Thursday.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) have filed papers calling for the process to be reviewed. This relates to the municipality’s ”attempt to rename eight streets and two buildings last year [phase one] and its more recent decision to rename 99 other streets and highways [phase two]”.

DA caucus leader John Steenhuisen said the process requires consultation, with objections having to be given proper consideration.

According to the news report, which cited his affidavit, ”a figure of R4-million has been mentioned” as the amount spent so far on the renaming.

The process sparked such controversy last year that more than 10 000 people marched in protest through the city centre.

The African National Congress (ANC) said the eThekwini council has a number of weeks before it needs to file opposing papers.

Some of the more controversial street names include Andrew Zondo Road, Swapo Road, Che Guevara Road and Griffiths Mxenge Highway.

Zondo was an ANC activist who placed a bomb in the Amanzimtoti shopping mall. The renaming of Mangosuthu Highway to Griffiths Mxenge Highway has been seen by IFP members as an insult to its leader, Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi. — Sapa