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Mon Dec 22 15:26:10 SAST 2014

Naming is for dead heroes only: iLIVE

Charles Simelane, Soweto | 14 November, 2012 00:02
Reserve Bank governor Gill Marcus holds up a replica of the new R200 bank note, depicting former president Nelson Mandela, at the bank's headquarters in Pretoria. File photo.

There is no problem with naming the country's key sites, streets and other assets after struggle heroes, but we are taking it too far.

It is wrong to name such sites after people who are still alive, who can still change and demolish all the good they have done .

This is why some institutions, like the Roman Catholic Church, never pronounce one a saint while she or he is still alive.

The aim is to assess the person's behaviour before bestowing upon her or him such an honour, no matter how good that person seems to be while still alive.

This is why I object to naming our currency after former president Nelson Mandela - or printing his face on it - and naming famous sites after living struggle stalwarts.

This practice is tantamount to promoting a personality cult. The process of honouring our heroes needs to be reviewed.


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