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Last Updated: Friday, 27 May, 2005, 08:51 GMT 09:51 UK
Pretoria name change is approved
Residents' views on the switch

A recommendation that the name of South Africa's capital be changed from Pretoria to Tshwane has been unanimously approved.

The Geographic Names Council took four hours to back the change. Tshwane is the name of a pre-colonial local chief and means "we are the same".

Supporters of the change say the switch will underscore South Africa's break with apartheid in 1994.

The city was named after Boer settler and Afrikaner hero Andries Pretorius.

At the weekend, hundreds of predominantly white South Africans staged a demonstration against the name change, saying they were disregarding the cultural traditions of the Afrikaner community.

Pro-Pretoria protesters
Opponents of the change say they feel marginalised

But the national agency responsible for name changes in South Africa, the Geographical Names Council, said there was no evidence that anyone would be affected by the renaming.

The city council approved the switch to Tshwane in March as part of moves to make place names more African.

Arts and Culture Minister Pallo Jordan is expected to approve the name change.

City names mark changing times
26 May 05 |  Africa
How South Africa has changed
13 Apr 04 |  Africa

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