City recommends renaming of Somerset West park after Neil Aggett
The City of Cape Town's Naming Committee yesterday, 14 August 2014, recommended that the park in Quinan Road, Westridge, be renamed after the late doctor and trade unionist, Neil Aggett. Read more below:
Agget was noted for his work in hospitals in disadvantaged areas, and his role in empowering workers to oppose unfair labour practices. He died in police custody in 1981. An inquest into the circumstances surrounding his death by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission subsequently found that his treatment at the hands of police was directly responsible for his death.
He has since been seen as one of the icons of the struggle against apartheid, and perhaps a figurehead of the white population's role in opposing the injustices at the time. As such, he is mentioned alongside fellow icons Victoria Mxenge and Steve Biko in Johnny Clegg's protest anthem, ‘Asimbonanga'.
‘In terms of Council's Naming Policy, names are considered if they are seen to enrich cultural diversity, commemorate historical events or celebrate Cape Town's rich and diverse biosphere,' said the Chairperson of the City's Naming Committee, Councillor Brett Herron.
A public participation process is to be followed to allow local residents to comment on the recommendation.
‘If this proposal is deemed suitable by the public, and accepted by the Executive Mayor and Council, this park will serve not only to commemorate the sacrifices made to topple the apartheid regime, but as inspiration to resist discrimination and move forward, united,' said Councillor Herron.
Statement issued by Councillor Brett Herron, Chairperson of the Naming Committee, City of Cape Town, August 17 2014
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