Following the official renaming of Port Elizabeth, there have been rumours that Cape Town may undergo a name change as well.
Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa officially approved and gazetted Port Elizabeth’s name change to Gqeberha on Tuesday, February 23. Rumours that there may be more to follow have led some to speculate that Cape Town may be next.
These whispers seem to be originating from a campaign that has been ongoing since 2012 by the Khoi community. They have been campaigning to have Cape Town’s name officially changed to //Hui !Gaeb.
The proposal was first brought forward in May of 2012 when the community gathered for the burial of their leader Dawid Kruiper. The Institute for the Restoration of Aborigines of South Africa has been pushing the proposed name change with little success.
The name //Hui !Gaeb means “where the clouds gather” in the Khoi language. This is a pretty accurate description of Cape Town, which is well-known for the clouds rolling over the top of Table Mountain.
The Institute approached Nandos that same year after the fast-food chain aired a controversial television advertisement on diversity. Nandos then sponsored billboards advertising Cape Town’s new name, which could be seen on the N2 and beside the Castle of Good Hope in Cape Town’s CBD.
However, no name has been spoken about or gazetted from the Department of Arts and Culture or any other government entity. This makes it incredibly unlikely that Cape Town will go by any other name officially.
Unofficially though, we can all still call the city by the nicknames and names in other languages we love best including eKapa, Kaapstad and of course the Mother City.
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