There is ongoing debate among Zimbabweans about the latest renaming programme announced by the government.
It’s nearly four decades since the country gained independence from Britain but many roads, landmarks and schools still honour British functionaries of the colonial era. Roads and schools still bear names of Royal family members as well as prominent British figures such as Princess Margaret Road, Churchill Boys School, Allan Wilson Boys schools, Queen Elizabeth Girls High School, Prince Edward and Elizabeth Windsor Road.
And so while many welcome the renaming of some of these edifices including the Victoria Falls Road now renamed Mosi-Oa-Tunya Road and welcomed renaming some of the public structures after guerrilla fighters who fought the 1970s guerrilla war against white-minority rule, they couldn’t help but notice that the president is the biggest beneficiary of the renaming having 10 roads named after him.
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They wonder if it’s not too soon to want such acclamation, especially when he’s been in power less than two years. Already one of Harare’s main roads, Enterprise Road, is to be called Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa Rd.
Other African notables who now have roads or streets named after them include Patrice Lumumba, Jomo Kenyatta and Abdel Gamal Nasser while beyond Africa, Cuba’s Fidel Castro and China’s Mao Zedong are represented.
JUST IN: Harare roads RENAMED— Larry Moyo (@larry_moyo) November 21, 2019
Cabinet has approved these changes:
Enterprise now ED Mnangagwa
Kirkman =Solo Mujuru Drive
Livingstone=OR Tambo Ave
Selous =John Nkomo
Fife Avenue =Leonid Brezhnev Avenue pic.twitter.com/3jjo4ZKnVy
For those unenthused about the street renaming, they point to the dire economic situation which is eroding the funds of workers such that even when they get paid, it can hardly cater for their living expenditure.
And given that the country is suffering from a cash shortage prompting the reintroduction of the Zimbabwe dollar after relying on US and South African currencies for a decade, they expect attention be centered on making the economy viable and the currency strong.
This doesn’t bring food on people’s tables. This government majors in minor things. Vakomana, what did we do to deserve this government. This is an added cost as people will have to update records…..— Son Excellency Biso Mayele 🇿🇼 (@BisoMayele) November 21, 2019
Cecil John Rhodes Drive is now Willie Musarurwa Drive, after a prominent Zimbabwean journalist while Harare’s hospital will now be named after Mr. Mugabe’s first wife, Sally who hailed from Ghana.
Instead of reforming our justice system, fixing corruption, health system, economy and the abuse going on, you are busy renaming streets in honour of yourselves. Very good use of time— Deadshot (@Deadshotredeye) November 21, 2019
Breaking News: Prices Set To Fall And Exchange Rates Stabalise After Govt Announces New Street Names— patrick mpandawana (@patrick_mpa) November 22, 2019