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Bulawayo to rename city streets after heroes, heroines

by Staff reporter
03 Jul 2021 at 09:21hrs | Views
BULAWAYO city fathers have said they will hold public consultations on the need to rename some streets after the country's heroes and heroines in the spirit of devolution.

This follows a High Court ruling in favour of the Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA), which sought an interdict barring the Local Government ministry from renaming some city streets after President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

A number of streets in Bulawayo, Harare, Kwekwe, Mutare, Chipinge, Bindura, Cheguru and Gweru were supposed to be renamed after Mnangagwa and other personalities under Statutory Instrument (SI) 167 of 2020 issued by Local Government minister July Moyo.

In Bulawayo, 6th Avenue and 6th Avenue Extension were to be renamed Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa Way, according to SI 167/20.

BPRA, however, challenged the legality of SI 167 of 2020, arguing that Moyo had no power to rename the streets without consulting residents and other stakeholders as espoused in the Names (Alteration) Act and Urban Councils Act.

Bulawayo mayor Solomon Mguni said following the ruling, council would engage residents on renaming streets in the spirit of devolution.

"You will notice that our avenues are grid-referenced and this is unique to Bulawayo for ease of reference," Mguni said yesterday.

"We had, as council, resolved not to tamper with that. Going forward and in view of the court order obtained by residents, we will work together with government to identify areas of convergence and put the residents of Bulawayo on board through consultations in the spirit of devolution."

Mguni said before the court ruling, council had submitted a list of streets to be renamed after the country's heroes.

"We sought to honour Dr Dumiso Dabengwa with Batsch Street, General Lookout Masuku with Forth Street, Alfred Nikita Mangena with Fife Street and President Emmerson Mnangagwa with King George Street, from Harare Road to Old Esigodini road.

"We also suggested corrections on Lobengula Street to King Lobengula Street and to rename a portion of Gwanda Road from Sam Parirenyatwa Street to the Umguza River Bridge to King Mzilikazi Way, among other luminaries that we honoured across the length and breadth of the city."

In June 2019, Zapu wrote to council requesting that Fife Street be renamed after Mangena.

The late President Robert Mugabe also had streets named after him.

In November 2017, some Zimbabweans were quick to remove and destroy street sign posts named after Mugabe following his ouster.

Source - newsday
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