No ruling on Mbombela name change

2013-11-17 18:02

Mbombela - It is not clear when the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria will decide whether Mpumalanga's capital city keeps its name or change it from Mbombela back to Nelspruit.

Lawyers for the Kruger Lowveld Chamber of Business and Tourism (KLCBT) Coalition concluded their two-day presentations in the High Court last week.

“Whatever the outcome, we will accept it because it was a fair hearing. The judge did a good job of hearing all the arguments and submissions between both the state advocates and our advocates,” said KLCBT financial manager Linda Grimbeek.

This was after the court decided to withhold its decision until further notice.

Nelspruit's name was officially changed to Mbombela on 16 October 2009, when former minister of arts and culture Lulu Xingwana gazetted it.

KLCBT and its partners immediately filed an application at the North Gauteng High Court to set aside the proclamation on the grounds of a "flawed" name change process. They argued that the consultation process, as required by law, had been unfair.

Grimbeek said the legal costs will set back KLCBT R758 000. KLCBT has already raised R528 000 through donations from community members and local businesses. She said they have already paid their advocates the R528 000 and hope to raise the outstanding R200 000 through a golf day early next year.

Even though the name change was approved, the implementation process has not yet been started because of the impending court case and the confusing proclamation of whether the city must be called Mbombela City or Mbombela.

Authorities at the provincial department of culture, sport and recreation, which is the umbrella body for the Provincial Geographical Names Committee, are also awaiting the outcome.

849 names changed

“We will await the outcome of the court case and will thereafter act in accordance with the judgement,” department spokesperson Sibongile Nkosi said.

According to the South African Geographical Names Council and the department of arts and culture, more than 849 names were changed in South Africa between 1996 and 2010.

According to Grimbeek, the Mbombela local municipality is already too indebted and probably won't be in a position to raise the R450m needed to change street names, websites, among other features.

KLCBT claimed that, as the municipality would have to carry almost half of the estimated total costs for the name change, rates were expected to be increased for taxpayers.

  • Andrew Terr - 2013-11-17 18:21

    Changing names is all these cretins are good for.It's all about getting back at the white man and they have thus lost the plot.

  • Khaedu Ndou - 2013-11-17 18:27

    I thought it has always been Nelspruit

      Donald Nobela - 2013-11-17 18:48

      You ignorant mr Ndou

  • Char Ou - 2013-11-17 18:30

    450mil for a new name should be enough reason not to proceed with the change, considering the amount of people living in poverty in SA. Get your priorities straight government.

  • Donald Nobela - 2013-11-17 18:44

    As much as it is everyone constitutional right to groups or race groups but i think whites form these groups to frustrate government or to prohibite change. I'm not racist.

      Fourhundredkg Bobbejaan - 2013-11-17 19:30

      You say something racist and then you say you are not racist. Make up your mind.

  • Spijo Skhokho - 2013-11-17 18:44

    So much money when it comes to name changes. No wonder I am so hungry now bcos thy waste money on stupid things

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 18:44

    A number of the comments herein are clearly from ignorant individuals and selfish white populists who would do their money to keep whatever is left of the apartheid legacy. Mbombela is the original name of the place where these "Nel" brothers were grazing their cattle, our great grand parents had homes in an around Mbombela, which is the original name by the way, they used their apartheid powers to move people to places that are currently cslled Kanyamazane, Msogwaba, Sibuyile which are all 30 KM the east of Mbombela. That is the history of Mbombela

      Christoffel Bouwer Nel - 2013-11-21 06:41

      I suppose there was a cow skin banner with the following: Welcome in Mbombela, to greet the Nel Brothers

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 18:46

    It has because you might have been born being called Nelspruit, but read my comment you will understand

      Nick Bozman - 2013-11-18 11:14

      No I don't understand ?

  • Mandla Nkosi - 2013-11-17 18:48

    Don't change all the names but there need to be a balance,this Africa and African names should reflect that because you won't find Mbombela in Asia or Europe, my great grandparents used refer Nelspruit as Mbombela.

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 18:48

    Read my comment here under

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 18:51

    Stephen Mbombela is where your Nel relatives grazed their cattle, my great grand fathers were staying there and I have thrir graves to prove it

  • Donald Nobela - 2013-11-17 18:55

    I hope the judge will consider the values,purpose & spirit of our constitution in his or her judgment.

  • Nwanawavhathu Jaycksen - 2013-11-17 19:17

    Shame white racists built these cities we are renaming, if it were up to me, i wouldnt bother change names for selfish reasons even though i hate racists. Not all whites are racist but you are

      Christoffel Bouwer Nel - 2013-11-21 06:46

      Racist this, racist that. That is all you have, a card called RACIST. Whites this, Afrikaners that. You are a true RACIST keyboard warrior. But you WILL get your day.

  • johan.steyn.1447 - 2013-11-17 20:06

    Can somebody please tell me why they don't take the money to change all these names and build a mega city for the people? Why should the lawyers and judges get this? We have been caught up into a contest where a minority wins again at the cost of the people. Are you going to allow it? Think about this carefully.

  • Paljas Paljassie - 2013-11-17 20:15

    Al the name changes of cities at Millions of rand but what about Diepsloot, niewebos, which are afrikaans names for squatter camps. Please change those names instead cos we don't want to be associate with it. And its not names given by the Afrikaans people. Just shows you the value systems of the real rascists of the country!!!! What does Nelspruit means??? Explain please.

  • johan.steyn.1447 - 2013-11-17 20:24

    Yes why not use the money and build up Diepsloot as a city. Change it's name because no one will mind. All the legal fees will feed these people instead. Then a true city was built and named by the people who built it.

      Paljas Paljassie - 2013-11-17 20:36

      They won't do it Johan, cos it means they have to work and nobody to blame when its not a success. Remember we have people with rights and no responsibility. And also, it is not in the culture to uplift a comuunity, but in the culture to suffer from inferiority complexes and call other rascists for such a suggestion.

  • Katlego Kopi - 2013-11-17 20:44

    The name changing must happen quickly before the elections. We need our identity back and do away with all the oppressors/Minorites names in our land.

      Joao Nunes - 2013-11-18 07:13

      Do away with everything the white man bought to the Radio, the TV, the car, electricity, the candle, the phone, the shoes, the dry cleaner, Bread, the mirror, sugar, the 3 piece suit, water pump, hair extensions, even the Vuvuzela was developed by a boer......and then see how interesting your world would be fool.

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 22:20

    @Jamba a settlement has already been paid to qualifying beneficiaries, remember Mbombela is now a capital city of Mpumalanga Province, so claiming the land back was going to be a detrimental move to the economy of Mpumalanga and the country, so a compensation was the only sound option available and having the city renamed to its original indigenous name

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 22:31

    @Paljas Nelspruit is taken from the following two names Nel, which is the surname of the two brothers and Spruit, which is an Afrikaans name for a stream, there is a river passing through the city, whereby its origins are traced as far as Emgwenya (Waterval Boven) 80Km west of Nelspruit, my guess is that these Nel brothers got their cows drinking from the Mgwenya river cause of its unending flow that is evident even today when you visit the Botanical gardens in Mbombela winter or summer

      Paljas Paljassie - 2013-11-18 02:38

      Thank you for the history. Now, why kill it? What is achieved by changing the name? Will more money be invested in the Mbombela economy due to the name change. Does the millions its going to cost be justified?

  • Samantha Ravenscroft - 2013-11-17 22:31

    Does the ANC not intend to build their own future in the form of suburbs, buildings,roads etc...They should keep their names for whatever they plan to build in this country and not replace that of a previous contributor. All the names they put forward seem to be fighters for this or that.How could these people contribute meaningfully if they were always fighting? What about people who invented things and businesses that employ people and ensure their existence? Where will these people feature in our history? A country exists NOT because of its government but because of its peoples initiative to survive and contribute.A government exists ONLY because of its people. Does the ANC feel threatened because they KNOW they cannot compare to the previous government in terms of progress, service delivery and discipline?What does one do when his neighbor builds a mansion? He builds a palace. So the ANC should build their palace first and then name it whatever they like. Dont hasten to take Africa off the map only because it was a white man who put it there. You would be cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      Prosper Nyawuza - 2013-11-18 01:32

      Correction, Africa was always there sweetheart, the white man just came with the map!!!

  • Makhosonke Nkosi - 2013-11-17 22:38

    @Johan who controls the economy, is it government or private sector? Your answer will tell you why can't they build mega cities. For any city to survive investors are key, it is no use to build a city which invedtors may not be interested in investing into. If that was possible, the previous/apartheid government would have built innumerable processing plants of our natural resources such as Gold, copper, steal etc.

      Clive Brink - 2013-11-18 06:10

      Wow, Makhosonke, you seem to have hit the nail right on the head. Our country, cities and dorpies must be on the threshold to boom, no - maybe explode, because there is lots of "steal" everywhere. You said it! Cant argue against your wisdom, the decline is evident and there for everyone to see must be as a result of the investment from the Chinese, Gupta's, Krecir's and the like. Good luck building your Utopia!

      Heinrich J Van Vuuren - 2013-11-18 12:45

      Makhosonke, the previous government did build processing plants, Iscor is just one example. So it is possible, yes. But the ANC government has no credibility left, so no one will be interested to get involved. If this government can get over their victim mentality, and look at what the previous government did right, then maybe they'll be able do something positive for a change.

  • johan.steyn.1447 - 2013-11-18 07:06

    Over 800 cities names were changed at R450 mil a shot. Make the sum. You can build a mega City with it.

  • John Stoltz - 2013-11-18 09:05

    What a waste of tax payers money ! But then the ANC top knobs do not pay taxes ! That money can better be spent on health, schools, water & sanitation, etc which are falling apart !

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