Battle over Mangosuthu Highway continues

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

The IFP has come out with guns blazing against the ANC's "justification" that they want to rename the Mangosuthu Highway in Umlazi township after the late Griffits Mxenge because Buthelezi is still alive.

IFP Women Brigade chairman Thembi Nzuza, who is also a councillor, described the reason as "feeble" .

She said South Africa was full of public places that bore the names of Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu, both of whom are still alive.

"The ANC's attempts to rename Mangosuthu Highway stem solely from their desire to marginalise the IFP leader," she said.

The IFP has long opposed the ANC's determination to rename hundreds of streets and public places in Durban, saying the ruling party was not willing to consult other political parties or even the residents.

"Last year the ANC flatly ignored a public display of opposition to the renaming process when thousands of IFP supporters marched through the streets of Durban in protest," she said.

Nzuza said Mangosuthu Highway was named after their leader, whose fund-raising efforts led to the setting up of Mangosuthu University of Technology next to the highway.

She said the IFP caucus in the eThekwini council would continue to fight the decision to rename the highway.

But the ANC remains adamant. ANC eThekwini region secretary John Mchunu said the renaming process would continue

"We are controlled by municipal bylaws," Mchunu said. "The bylaws, which even the IFP agreed to, states that roads can only be named after living people such as the former state president and King Goodwill Zwelithini.