Zvamaida Murwira and Blessings Chidakwa
Cabinet yesterday approved new names of roads, places and Government buildings in Harare, Bulawayo and other towns across the country, as a deliberate effort to foster unity, while reflecting on the country’s history and identity.
This was said by Acting Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Mangaliso Ndlovu, while addressing journalists after yesterday’s Cabinet meeting.
Notable among the changes is the renaming of Enterprise Road in Harare to Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa Road.
The name changes are mainly aimed at honouring the country’s national heroes, as well as nationalists from the region.
Minister Ndlovu said approval of the new names followed a report presented by Vice President Kembo Mohadi as chairperson of the Cabinet Committee on Place Names.
“Cabinet noted that through the process of naming, every community or society defines its identity and culture, tells its history, and espouses its values, beliefs, norms and world-view,” he said.
“Naming is also a social engagement tool that fosters understanding, peace and unity in diversity.”
Besides Enterprise Road being named after President Mnangagwa, roads in other towns now bear the name of the Head of State and Government.
They include Sixth Avenue in Bulawayo, A5 Road in Kwekwe, Main Street in Gweru, Chipinge Main Street, Etherton Road in Bindura, Edgar Peacock Road in Mutare, Henry Hartley Road in Chegutu and Hughes Street in Masvingo.
Some of the streets whose names changed in Harare are Speke Avenue, which changed to Agostinho Neto Avenue, Angwa Street to Sir Seretse Khama Street, Third Street to Patrice Lumumba Street, Rezende Street to Julia Zvobgo Street, Selous Avenue to John Landa Nkomo Avenue, Cameron Street to Joseph Msika Street, while the stretch from Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport to Manyame Air Base is now called Josiah Tungamirai Drive, and Kirkman Drive is now known as Solomon Mujuru Drive.
In Bulawayo, the stretch from Fourth Avenue through to Seventh Street up to King George has been renamed John Landa Nkomo Avenue, Collenbrander Avenue is now Lookout Masuku Avenue and Victoria Falls Road is Mosi-Oa-Tunya Road.
Fort Street through to Bellevue Road up to Plumtree Road has been renamed Benjamin Burombo Street.
Some of the Government buildings whose names have been changed include the New Government Composite Office Building in Harare which will now be called Mgandane Dlodlo Building; Harare Central Hospital is now Sally Mugabe Central Hospital; Immigration Building in Harare has been named to Chingaira Makoni Building; Defence House to Hashim Mbita House; CID Headquarters Building to Ethan Dube Building and Central Registry Building to Muchecheterwa Chiwashira Building.