Cape Town renames road after Steve Biko

The NY1 road in Gugulethu, Cape Town, has been officially renamed Stephen Biko Drive, after the anti-apartheid hero Steve Biko, as part of the city's ongoing renaming process.

Inaugurating the new street name, Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille paid tribute to the Black Consciousness activist Biko who in 1977 became the 41st person to die in police custody in South Africa: "Like many great prophets telling difficult truths, Steve Biko was murdered for his ideas... [and] the power of his revolution."

She said that the renamed street symbolised a break from a past often marred by terms of inferiority, signalling a brighter future for coming generations of black South Africans by eliminating terms associated with historical injustice.

The previous street name "NY" refers to "native yard". De Lille heralded the work of the renaming reconciliation programme as "building, brick by brick, the Cape Town of tomorrow that truly belongs to everyone".

Cape Town was the last major South African city to begin renaming apartheid-era streets – a process that began in April 2001 when the city council's renaming panel of experts was established.

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