• April 25th, 2019
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Call to rename streets legitimate - Namholo


WINDHOEK - Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development Minister, Charles Namholo, says the call to change Namibian street names to move away from the colonial legacy is genuine and legitimate. This follows objections and complaints by some sections of the society asking why the City of Windhoek still has one of its streets named after Adolf Lüderitz, if the same name was removed from one of Namibia's oldest towns and changed to its original name !Nami#Nus. Speaking to New Era yesterday, Namholo said there are many streets in Namibia, especially in Windhoek, that still bear colonial names 23 years after independence. Although the minister is of the opinion that such names need to be removed, he pointed out that the responsibility lies with the local authority councillors and not with the line ministry. Among many streets in Windhoek bearing the names of colonial masters is Lüderitz-Strasse located between the old State House and the Telecom Namibia head office. "There is a difference between a town and a street, however the call is legitimate," said the minister. Spokesperson of the City of Windhoek, Josua Amukugo, said the issue of naming and renaming streets is the prerogative of residents and not the city council. He said if people are not satisfied with the name of a street, they are at liberty to submit a proposal to the Street Naming and Renaming Committee. This committee then advises the city council on what name should be used based on the proposal received from the community. "We are not taking a lead in the naming of the streets. It is the people themselves. Unless there is a proposal from a politician, but again the committee will have to double check that the proposed name is not being used elsewhere," said Amukugo. He further added that the city council has no plan to rename Lüderitz-Strasse until it receives a formal proposal from residents. Amukugo could not tell when the street in question was given that name since he was out of office, but the name has been in existence for decades before independence. Early last month, President Hifikepunye Pohamba announced the results of the 4th Delimitation Commission, which among others recommended that the harbour town of Lüderitz should be renamed !Nami#Nus. It is believed that in the late 1880s Franz Adolf Eduard Lüderitz, a German merchant duped Nama Chief, Joseph Frederiks, and bought the land for 500 British Pounds Sterling in gold and a further 60 Wesley Richards rifles. Although there are pockets of residents who object to the idea of a name change, many support the idea and described it as reclaiming their heritage. By Tonateni Shidhudhu  
New Era Reporter
2013-09-19 09:24:52 5 years ago

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