Big push to rename Cape Town International after Winnie Mandela

 ·5 Mar 2019

The EFF has announced that it will table a motion to rename Cape Town International Airport to Winnie Mandela International Airport.

In a statement, the political party said that the motion will be debated in parliament at 14h00 on Tuesday (5 March).

As part of its submission, the EFF said that 2 April 2019 will make exactly one year since the death of the struggle icon Madikizela-Mandela.

It added that Madikizela-Mandela was a member of the fifth parliament and that she had previously been recognised for her massive contribution in the fight against apartheid.

“(The house) recalls that there are very few significant spaces and areas that are named after female freedom fighters in South Africa.

“The greatest honour to give Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela will be to rename the Cape Town International Airport after the struggle icon, in order to ensure that memories of her gallant war against Apartheid are not deleted,” it said.

Other name changes

In May 2018, the Airports Company of South Africa called for public comments on plans to rename four of the country’s airports.

The company said that Cape Town International Airport, East London Airport, Port Elizabeth International Airport, and Kimberley Airport were all subject to renaming as part of the Transformation of Heritage Landscape government programme.

It added that the proposed renaming will be implemented in terms of the South African Geographical Name Council Act, and that the process was therefore open to public comment until 6 June 2018.

While this process is still ongoing Cape Town International has gained the most interest following the near simultaneous death of Madikizela-Mandela, following her death earlier this year.

However, the proposed change has also been met with some opposition with Janine Myburgh, president of the Cape Chamber of Commerce, stating that Cape Town was an international destination and needed a name that enjoyed international recognition.

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