Human Rights Day? The internet wants to remember it as #SharpevilleDay

21 March 2019 - 16:44 By Kyle Zeeman
69 people were killed in the Sharpeville Massacre.
69 people were killed in the Sharpeville Massacre.
Image: TBG

As political parties flocked to Sharpeville, Vereeniging, on Human Rights Day to honour those who lost their lives in the Sharpeville Massacre 59 years ago, ordinary South Africans have taken to social media to call for the name of the national holiday to be changed to reflect the tragedy.

69 protesters were killed by apartheid police in 1960 in Sharpeville while demonstrating against the pass laws imposed by the government.

While March 21 was always known as Sharpeville Day, although never celebrated as a national holiday during apartheid, it was decided by the 1994 democratically-elected government that it would be remembered as Human Rights Day instead. 

Those commemorating the massacre on Thursday once again called for the holiday to be remembered as Sharpeville Day, and took to social media to make their voices heard.