Back on the map - Mthethwa approves renaming of Zonnebloem back to District Six

2019-12-17 15:21
District Six is best known for the forced removal of over 60 000 of its inhabitants during the 1970s by the apartheid regime. (iStock/Getty)

District Six is best known for the forced removal of over 60 000 of its inhabitants during the 1970s by the apartheid regime. (iStock/Getty)

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Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa has approved the renaming of Zonnebloem back to District Six.

The approval was published in the Government Gazette on Tuesday.

Named as the Sixth Municipal District of Cape Town, District Six was a cosmopolitan community until 1966, when the apartheid government forced residents to the outskirts of the city and declared it a whites-only area under the Group Areas Act.

The renaming application had been made by the District Six Museum to the provincial geographical names committee last year.

Director Bonita Bennett told News24 at the time the campaign was part of wider restitution efforts as people felt part of their history and identity had been erased.

Former residents still spoke of District Six, not Zonnebloem, she said.

At the end of Heritage Month in September, Western Cape Arts and Culture MEC Anroux Marais submitted the supported application to Mthethwa to officially approve the name change.

Marais said it was hoped the renaming would clearly communicate to the community and residents of District Six they had been seen, heard and they "do belong".

In September, Keizersgracht was renamed Hanover Street, which was the business hub of the historical community before the forced removals.

Read more on:    cape town
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