The issue of name change in South Africa worries the public from preachers to politicians, as much as it worries black journalists. Pastors from the Grahamstown East churches are now pushing for the name change. Sasco invited the Eastern Cape MEC of Agriculture Mr Gugile Nkwinti during the freedom day and he holds similar views about name change. The comments are the same as the reasons behind the formation of Black journalists forum . I read an article from MG about Black journalists forum and I decided to share it with you.
Mr Nkwinti and some Grahamstown pastors believe that changing names can’t be important for the poor people, because they are more concerned about other issues, such as better housing and safe water. However, we also need to realise that the colonial domination left something that can’t be changed such as Settlers 1820 and the only way to honour black heroes is to build the same building as the 1820 to show that blacks and whites are equal. Take Egazini monument for example, you can easily tell that, that monument perpetuate a stereotype that blacks are still inferior, because it is smaller than the 1820 settlers monument. According to the belief the process of name changing is a way of decolonising our minds and the country as a whole.
Similarly, the forum of black journalists seeks to infuse the black community with a new-found pride in themselves, their efforts, their value system, their culture, their religion and their outlook to life. However, poor people from the other side of ‘Grahamstown’ township have a different view, they think that government can use the money for development, because even if you change the name the memories will still remain the same. For example, changing ‘Graham-stown’ won’t change the fact that European people honoured colonel Graham after the good job he did for them, killing a lot of amaXhosa. Can we really create good from the past or we can only create good for the future?