Windhoek finally honors Mandela

07 September 2018 Author   Eliaser Ndeyanale

The late South African liberation heroine, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, will soon have a street in Windhoek named after her, following a decision by the City Fathers to honour individuals most of whom played a role in the liberation of Namibia and South Africa. The late South African liberation heroine, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, will soon have a street in Windhoek named after her, following a decision by the City Fathers to honour individuals most of whom played a role in the liberation of Namibia and South Africa. 

An application to rename a street after the late wife of former South African President and world icon, the late Nelson Mandela, was first submitted by ex-SWAPO Party Youth League (SPYL) leader, Elijah Ngurare, in 2006.
A follow-up to Ngurare’s application was then made by another former SPYL leader, Job Amupanda, in 2014, but the two applications were not considered by the street and place naming committee. 
Affectionately known as Mama Winnie, the ANC stalwart died in Johannesburg in April this year after persistent illness. 
President Hage Geingob invited ridicule when he told mourners at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg that there is a street in Windhoek named after Madikizela-Mandela.
Others that will be honoured are the late Reverend Bartholomews Karuaera, who died in September 2013. 
Caesar Street in Wanaheda has been identified as the suitable street to be named after the reverend. 
The reverend was one of the early founders of the African Methodist Episcopal (AMC) Church in Windhoek, according to an obituary. 
Karuaera travelled the world serving SWAPO as well as the church. He was part of a resistance movement, together with former President, Sam Nujoma, that was against the relocation of blacks from the old location to Katutura.
Lucifer and Legioen Streets in Katutura will be joined and renamed after the late Reverend Erwin Tjirimuje. 
Tjirimuje was part of the delegation which went to Zambia in the 1970s to meet with the SWAPO leadership in exile in order to brief them about the struggle inside the country.
The City also supported the renaming of streets in honour of the late Ivako Kapuuo and Jason Daniel Mutumbulwa.
Ivaka is the father of assassinated Ovaherero Paramount Chief, Clemens Kapuuo. 
Mutumbulwa was one of the 37 Namibians who were imprisoned at Robben Island. 
Evangelist Mika Kaiyamo, who was also close to SWAPO, will also be honoured with a street name.
Gregor Mendel Street will be renamed in honour of former freedom fighter, Gabriel Shikongo Nuunyango, while Kolossense Street will be renamed after the late Archbishop Obed Muinjo.
Speaking during the recent renaming of Bach Street in Windhoek in honour of the late Ovaherero Paramount Chief, Kuaima Riruako, Windhoek Mayor, Muesee Kazapua, said the City is moving ahead with its plans to rename streets after heroes and heroines who contributed to the country’s independence.
“Renaming streets after Namibians or others that helped this country win its independence; will enable the people to erase painful memories of the suffering caused by German colonial oppression and South African apartheid.
“We Namibians have a tendency of recognising people when they are no longer with us. This is wrong. We need to speed up the process and rename streets after people when they are still with us. As a token of appreciation, the policy guidelines recognize the importance of paying tribute to leaders who tirelessly devoted their time to their people.”

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