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It gives me great pleasure today to oversee the renaming of Keizersgracht to its historic name of Hanover Street. We are taking this restorative step following a successful public participation process and approval by full council.

The name change is taking place on Heritage Day and we hope that this symbolic act of restoring the historic name of Hanover Street will help ease some of the pain for those who were forcefully removed from the area all those years ago and help them to remember the good memories that many will have of living there. Festivities today included a march to the site, where I was able to address the community and unveil the new street board.

It is clear that the community of District Six had a desire for the original name to be reinstated. The request was made by the District Six Working Committee in June 2019, and we put a call out for a public participation process to allow the whole of Cape Town to submit their comments and views.

Up to 1 195 residents and interested parties submitted comments during the public participation process which ended on 26 July 2019. Ninety-six percent of the participants supported the proposed name change.

Following the public participation process, the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee recommended that Keizersgracht be renamed to its original name, Hanover Street. The recommendation was tabled at the council meeting last month, where it was approved.

I want to thank all the NGOs, community organisations and interested people for submitting their views and taking part in this important process. I also want to thank Councillor Marian Nieuwoudt, and the Executive Director Ossie Asmal and his team for overseeing this process with such professionalism.

We hope that today is the start of a new chapter in the history of Hanover Street and for the community of District Six.

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