ANC divided at renaming Umzimkhulu Municipality after late youth league leader Sindiso Magaqa
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DURBAN - The ANC branches in Umzimkhulu appeared to be divided over renaming of the municipality after the late ANC youth league leader, Sindiso Magaqa.
In its first sitting, the ANC caucus tabled the proposal of the name change and it was approved by the council but ANC members outside the council appeared unhappy with the proposal.
An ANC leader who asked not to be named said the proposal did not come from the party structures but was imposed by the region, adding that the structures on the ground would oppose the name change when the council began consultative forums or referendum.
The leader said there was no unanimous decision even within the ANC because the change was being pushed by the faction that Magaqa belonged to when the party was preparing for the conference it held in 2018.
“Let them come to the people with that proposal and we are going to show them that an up-bottom approach would not work here. We know who is pushing the name change and I can guarantee you people of Umzimkhulu are against that,” said the ANC leader.
He added that there were councillors in the previous term who tried to push the name change but the idea was shot down by other ANC councillors, who argued that there were other party leaders who had a good track record in the struggle against apartheid in Umzimkhulu who deserved to be honoured if there was need.
Further, he said according to most ANC members, business people and Amakhosi Umzimkhulu was the correct name because the river and the town was named after the big palace of the Bhaca king who settled in the area during historical King Shaka territorial wars.
ANC regional chairperson Zamo Nxumalo dismissed the anti-name change sentiment, saying those people were the ones who hated Magaqa. He said the council had taken a resolution and the process of stakeholder consultation would begin soon.
Nxumalo added that there was no reason for this hullabaloo because the council was only changing the name of the institution which is the municipality, not the town or the area.
Magaqa was shot in July 2017 but died in the hospital in September of the same year.
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