Capetonians split over proposed Madiba statue
THE NUMBER of objectors equalled the number of supporters and now it will be up to mayor Patricia de Lille to decide whether a statue of Nelson Mandela should be placed on the balcony of Cape Town City Hall.
Politicians on the City’s naming and nomination committee overwhelmingly supported the installation, which would be an important part of the National Liberation Heritage Route.
During a heated debate yesterday, DA, ANC and EFF councillors led by committee chairperson Brett Herron voted to recommend accepting the Western Cape government’s “gift” of the R3.5m statue.
Western Cape MECs Alan Winde and Anroux Marais asked the city to partner in the heritage project, which is set to commemorate “the life and work of Madiba and those who were involved in South Africa’s transition to democracy”.
The committee discussed the 273 public comments received with 64 in support, 64 objections and 145 general comments.
The comments dealt mostly with waste of money, which could be better used on caring for the poor.
Freedom Front Plus councillor Erika Botha-Rossouw said she had a lot of respect for Madiba but would not support the installation because judging from the comments, the City didn’t have a mandate from the public.
Democratic Independent councillor Anwar Adams said the objections “far outweighed” the support comments, and Mandela would have preferred the money be used on projects for the homeless.