The Freedom Front Plus welcomed the announcement of the local structure of another opposition party, the United Democratic Movement (UDM) of Mr. Bantu Holomisa that they oppose the changing of street names in  Pretoria. The announcement was made during a public participation meeting in the City Centre of Pretoria.
It was reported earlier that the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) also opposes the name changes.
According to Mr. Conrad Beyers, FF Plus councillor in the Tshwane metro council, the UDM and IFP’s positions underlines the fact that the protest against the name changes is not a racial conflict between black and white, but a matter of principle surrounding tolerance and mutual respect for the cultures and history of all the country’s communities.
According to the FF Plus, the chaotic and polarising nature of the public consultation process proves that the local ANC went too far this time around.
“There is no debate, no respect – only total polarisation. One gets the impression that a panicking Mbeki-faction, that currently controls Council, is knocking over the chess board before handing the mess to their political opponents”, Beyers said.
The FF Plus said that the party is open for negotiations on a fair settlement regarding the street names, but that the current process is totally flawed and should be halted.
“It will be wise to wait until after the 2009 general elections so that cool-headed and balanced negotiations can be conducted with the new government about the matter.”
The FF Plus said that talks on national level should now be considered so that the local ANC can be called to order. Mr. Mathews Phosa, ANC treasurer general, said yesterday that the ANC ‘dropped the ball’ regarding reconciliation between the different racial groups in South Africa. The local ANC is trying to destroy any hope of such reconciliation in Pretoria.