Govt's process in changing EC city, town names flawed - NMB Mayor Bhanga
Last week, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa signed-off on a decision to rename Port Elizabeth 'Qqeberha' and Uitenage 'Kariega' among other name changes in the province.
JOHANNESBURG - Nelson Mandela Bay Mayor Nqaba Bhanga believes that the process followed by the government in arriving at name changes for numerous towns and cities in the Eastern Cape was flawed.
Last week, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa signed-off on a decision to rename Port Elizabeth "Qqeberha" and Uitenage "Kariega" among other name changes in the province.
The public has 30 days to lodge objections.
Bhanga said that "Gqeberha" was a Khoi name and therefore writing it in Xhosa was an insult to the Khoi language.
“Gqeberha is a Khoi name from a river which is the Baakens River.The issue that we are raising here, is that if Gqeberha is a Khoi name then fine, write it in Khoi because the restoration of languages means that the languages that were written incorrectly must be restored and be written correctly."
Bhanga said the name-changing process undertaken was not inclusive.
“I’m not opposed to this name changing but for any name change to make sense, I believe, as I’ve stated, that it should meet certain requirements, it should unify our people. It should be a name that is easily readable and recognisable.
WATCH: Gqeberha: Can you pronounce Port Elizabeth’s new name?