Articles

The Battle Over History

August 2007

In the process of ‘transforming’ South Africa, towns, streets, dams and air ports are being renamed. For instance, Pietersburg has become Polokwane, Stanger has become KwaDukuza, and Pretoria has virtually become Tshwane. Another 50 place name changes are to come. - In Pietermaritzburg some 19 streets were renamed. In Cape Town 37 streets are to be changed. And in Durban 181 new name proposals have caused angry protests from English, Afrikaans, Zulu and Indian South Africans. Johannesburg Airport is now called “O.R. Tambo International Airport”. And people are wondering: Will Cape Town be baptised iKapa and Johannesburg eGoli?

Streets and buildings are being renamed after ANC heroes, such as Steve Biko, a Black Consciousness leader who, during the “struggle”, died in prison; or Chris Hani, the assassinated head of the Communist Party; or Joe Slovo, the late alleged KGB colonel/SACP leader who planned means of terror; and after countless lesser lights. John Steenhuisen, the opposition Democratic Alliance’s leader of the Durban Metro caucus, said: “This kick-sand-in-your-face kind of approach from the ANC cannot go unchallenged. They are using their majority in council as a blunt instrument to push their will and narrow party political interests.” Tony Leon, the DA’s former national leader, called the new names “a rogues’ gallery of Third World Revolutionaries.” 1) Even liberation theologians are favoured with street names, e.g. Catholic Archbishop Denis Hurley † and Dr Christiaan Beyers Naudé †, once head of the South African Council of Churches (SACC). Zulu names, too, are to be abolished, such as that of Princess Magogo, the mother of the IFP leader, after whom a Stadium is named, and the Mangosuthu Highway which is called after Buthelezi himself.

Obliterating the History of South Africa

Rev Shaun Willcock of Bible Based Ministries, Durban, says: “The ruling black Marxist African National Congress (ANC) is steadily and deliberately obliterating the history of English and Afrikaans South Africans. This is seen, in a very practical way, in the recent countrywide ‘renaming process’. Most of South Africa’s cities and towns were planned, laid out, and built by English and Afrikaner South Africans – the two ‘white tribes’. It is not surprising, then, that the cities and streets and buildings were for the most part named after various white leaders and heroes of the past. Even so, however, South Africa has always had beautiful place names in the black languages as well. But this is not good enough for the ANC. They have embarked on a deliberate policy of what they call ‘transformation’…by erasing the monuments to English and Afrikaans South Africans, renaming the cities, and renaming the streets after predominantly ANC terrorist ‘heroes’ and others. The plan behind this is to obliterate the history of the whites in SA, to make it appear as if they never came to these shores and never accomplished anything.” 2)

Obliterating the history of Christianity

Karl Marx taught that the first battlefield is the re-writing of history. In the “new South Africa” all past history has been declared “unjust”, while all post-1994 history is hailed as “proudly South African”. The preamble of the Constitution of South Africa begins with: “We, the people, recognise the injustices of our past.” These words are the starting point of the “New South Africa”. All generations which developed the country before the ANC came to power are accused of “injustice”.

This claim is not only untrue, it is also a condemnation of God and Christ. Admittedly, there have been good and bad times, but South Africa was much shaped by faith in Jesus Christ, and was thus able to create a thriving Christian civilisation. Jesus says in Revelation 21:5: “Behold, I make all things new.” So everything He touches, He utterly transforms. When He came to the African continent He civilised it. He established churches, missions, hospitals, universities, education, free enterprise, modern science, benevolence and charity. He taught a better and higher regard for human life. He set free many who were enslaved by witchcraft, demons, and fetishes. He released them from superstitious fears and magical beliefs which destroy initiative and effort. Today South Africa has roads, railways, harbours, airports, electricity and computers. It has a stable supply of food. It has teachers, managers, doctors, professors, artisans and businessmen of a higher standard than all other sub-Saharan countries. Indeed, within only a century, South Africa was moved from stone age to space age with much goodwill and finance from the Whites.

Almighty God honours those who honour Him. When Jan van Riebeeck came to these desolate shores in 1652 he prayed that God might help him and his people to “implant and expand the true Reformed Christian religion… to the praise and honour of His Name.” The spirit of this prayer has permeated much of South Africa’s history. In a barren country depopulated by war, starvation, and death, there arose mealie fields, supermarkets, gold mines, and housing estates. Large numbers of Africans migrated to it and have increased to almost 50 million. In fact, many have prospered and “become heavy and sleek.” 3)

Pretoria

Though one should pay honour where honour is due, the South African authorities are now trying to wipe out the history of the Whites by superimposing their own people’s names. One interesting example is Pretoria. This history-rich city was established in 1855 and named after Andries Pretorius, the Christian Voortrekker leader who lived from 1798-1853. Even before the accession of the ANC, Pretoria was destined to be wiped off the map. In 1987, the liberation theologian Dr Allan Boesak, speaking against Apartheid and hailing the future ANC dispensation as the “New Jerusalem”, declared: “The New Jerusalem is not a future world somewhere else. No, the New Jerusalem comes from heaven into this reality… this City does not need to wait for ‘eternity’. This new Jerusalem will arise from the ashes of all that which today is called Pretoria.” 4)

Hence, on 5 December 2000, Pretoria was symbolically put to ashes, and the megacity of Tshwane was established. It was named after a mythical chief who may have lived in the area 200 years ago, although “some Ndebele kingshave never heard of him.” - But “the most plausible explanation,” says the Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, “is that the name is derived from the Setswana word ‘tshwana’, meaning a black cow. During a time of drought and famine, a black cow was used as a principal part of a rainmaking ritual in which water was taken from the main river that flows through the area… and sprinkled on a black cow. The cow was then allowed to graze freely, under the belief that wherever the cow grazed, the land would become fertile and rain would fall.” Tshwane thus means “the place of the black cow.” 5) In spite of this explanation the authorities erected a R1 million statue of chief Tshwane who, representing paganism, stands now in close proximity of Paul Krüger, the Christian President of the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek. 6)

Let those who build be honoured

The African National Congress came to power in 1994 and received with it every opportunity to build cities, dams, schools, hospitals, and roads to which to give the names of its honoured members. Thus there is no need to rob the honour of past historical figures, neither is it necessary to steal God’s glory. The ANC has inherited the richest and most powerful country in sub-Saharan Africa, and Thabo Mbeki, the State President, is regarded as the foremost leader in Africa. Such ‘riches and honour come (not from the struggles of the ANC, but) of God, and he reigns over all. In His hand is power and might; and in His hand it is to make great and to give strength unto all.’ (1 Chronicles 29:12) But God demands that those who enjoy the blessings must not forget to ‘glorify Him and give thanks to Him’ (Romans 1:21). In every generation God warned the Israelites, but they, being “filled with food, became heavy and sleek. They abandoned the God who made them and rejected the Rock their Saviour...” “The LORD saw this and rejected them because He was angered by His sons and daughters. ‘I will hide My face from them,’ he said, ‘and see what their end will be… I will heap calamities upon them…” (Deuteronomy 32)

Let us honour the great deeds of the past, remember their doers, and thank Heaven for them. God is giving South Africa ample opportunity to add to these deeds, to give tribute to those who do them, and to thank Him for all His blessings.

D. Scarborough
GOSPEL DEFENCE LEAGUE
P O Box 587, Sea Point 8060, RSA

Tel/Fax 021-510-6854
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Footnotes:

1. Shaun Willcock, Obliterating the History of the Whites in South Africa., June 2007. 2. Ibid. 3. National Department of Health, Strategical Plan 2000-2004. This states: “The prevalence of over weight in adult males 45-59 years is 29% and 55% for females of the same age range, whereas obesity is 9% for males and 29% for females (SADHS 1998).” 4. Dr Allan Boesak was then Vice President of the SA Council of Churches (SACC) and President of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC). He spoke in Frankfurt, Germany to a crowd of c. 100 000 people at the final rally of the Kirchentag on 21 June 1987. 5. City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, from Wikipedia free encyclopedia, redirected from Tshwane. Internet. 6. Chief Tshwane statue finally unveiled, Internet.

 

 



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