Tshwane council changed policy ahead of name changes

Just weeks before new street names for Pretoria were approved, the ANC-controlled Tshwane metro council changed a policy requiring consultation with residents, it was reported on Wednesday.

The original council document concerning name changes, which was approved in September 2007, was not adhered to, Beeld newspaper reported on Wednesday.

This document required that at least 51% of registered voters in a street give written consent for a new street name.

However, the Tshwane metro changed this requirement in January. Two months later, Tshwane mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa made an announcement concerning 25 new street names.

The 2007 document also required that new street names be put to residents via local newspapers but there was no public participation on the 25 names announced.

Last week, civil rights lobby group AfriForum sent Ramokgopa a lawyer’s letter pointing out that he was showing contempt for justice by trying to force the name change issue.

Ramokgopa’s office said AfriForum’s letter had been sent to the municipality’s legal department. — Sapa

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