Gqeberha: DA to Submit Parliamentary Questions on Name Changes

Gqeberha: DA to Submit Parliamentary Questions on Name Changes

- The Democratic Alliance (DA) is planning to submit written parliamentary questions regarding the Eastern Cape name changes

- Port Elizabeth and many other cities as well as two airports were renamed after it was gazetted by the government

- The DA wants to know if residents were given enough time to make their voices heard on the name changes

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The Democratic Alliance (DA) has expressed its distaste for the name changes of certain areas in the Eastern Cape. Gqeberha (formerly Port Elizabeth) has been trending on social media since the news broke of the gazetted name change.

The party plans to submit written parliamentary questions to the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture regarding the name changes. The DA wants to know the cost of changing the names and the public participation process.

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Plans to change the names of airports and towns in the Eastern Cape go back as far as 2019 when various residents opposed the name changes.

DA upset over Port Elizabeth's name change
The DA believes the ANC has 'gone too far' after various towns and two airports names' were changed. Image: People's Assembly, Stock
Source: Getty Images

According to News24, DA Spokesperson Veronica van Dyk says it is important to question whether the public and residents were given adequate time to make their voices heard on the issue of the name changes.

Van Dyk added that due to the public outcry, the name changes were nothing more than a 'political ploy' by the ANC.

A report by IOL stated that in September 2020, the DA opposed the name changes to towns in Buffalo City, arguing that renaming the towns and airports would not increase tourism nor would it create employment.

Earlier reported on the government releasing a list of 13 different name changes to towns and airports. Port Elizabeth is the big one with the Friendly City's name being changed to Gqeberha.

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Reports say that the name change process was lengthy and lasted around two years. At this time, residents were given the opportunity to challenge the name changes that were proposed. Back in 2019, PE residents were not impressed with the possible name change.

The PE International Airport and several other towns, such as Berlin, Uitenhage and King Williams Town's name changes were also recognised by Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa.

Many South Africans, however, have headed online to share their opinion on Port Elizabeth's new name. While some that it is very difficult to pronounce, others think that it is very beautiful and suitable for the area. takes a look at some of the varies tweets about Gqeberha. You can read some of them below:

@MonwabisiKete said:

"Gqeberha is beautiful."

@MaS1banda said:

"If amaXhosa can say 'Port Elizabeth' with ease, you, too, can learn to say Gqeberha. I didn't think this needed to be said, but I see it does. This tweet isn't (just) about how anyone pronounces Gqeberha… Much like renaming any place, it isn't just about changing a name."

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"We honestly not gonna be teaching white people to pronounce Gqeberha. I still struggle with Vanderbijlpark myself."

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Source: Briefly News

Reeshni Chetty avatar

Reeshni Chetty Reeshni Chetty is a senior current affairs reporter. The Damelin journalism and media studies graduate was top of her class with 16 distinctions and she boasts experience in radio, print and digital media. When Reeshni is not rushing to bring you the most important and breaking news in current affairs, she's raising awareness around mental health. Reeshni has a passion for breaking the stigma surrounding mental health issues.

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