Cradock should be Cradock – residents say no to Nxuba

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Calata Foundation

The Cradock Business Forum and other stakeholders are leading a campaign against the town’s renaming to Nxuba, one of several changes published in an official gazette on August 26 by the Minister for Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa.

Wilhelm Smit of the Business Forum said 12,000 of the 15,000 signatures on different petitions came from his office as they voted overwhelmingly against the change.

He said 30 days were allowed for public participation.

Smit also said a march was held on Heritage Day where various groups also spoke out on the proposed name change.

He says it is therefore premature to refer to the town as Nxuba.

Smit says this is a very sensitive issue as the city is world famous for the “Cradock-4” and the canoe marathon, to name a few.

Meanwhile, the Fort Calata Foundation says the ANC and the local municipality are playing politics of form rather than politics of substance.

The founder and spokesman of the foundation, Lukhanyo Calata, says whether the name change or not will not matter when people’s material conditions remain the same.

His father Fort, was one of the world famous Cradock Four, who was murdered by apartheid police in 1985. The others were Matthew Goniwe, Sparrow Mhonto and Sicelo Mhlauli.

Speaking to Algoa FM News on Wednesday, Calata said that even though the name changes, people will still have no electricity or water and will still have to drive on unpaved or rutted roads.

He says the money spent on changing the name should be used to improve the lives of the people of Cradock.

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