Witwatersrand National Botanical Garden gets a new name.

Following several years of formal and informal discussion and consultation,the Board of the National Botanical Institute (NBI) submitted a proposal to the Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism on the possibility of changing the name of the Witwatersrand National Botanical Garden to a more recognisable name, as part of the NBIs branding and marketing strategy.

The opportunity to consider a new name for the garden was welcomed by Minister Valli Moosa, who proposed that the garden be dedicated to the memory of Mr Walter Sisulu, the leader of the struggle for a democratic South Africa. The wide national and international recognition of the leadership role of Walter Sisulu was reflected in the tributes paid to him on his death in May 2003. Mr Nelson Mandela has repeatedly referred to Walter Sisulu as the real father of the new South Africa, a view shared by all who knew his life and times.

The Board of the NBI supported the proposal, which was submitted to DEAT and to Cabinet in October 2003. At the recent meeting of the NBI Board, a proposal was accepted to inaugurate the new name at a dedication ceremony in March 2004. The main focus of the ceremony will be to honour the legacy of Mr Walter Sisulu, to profile the Botanical Garden and to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Freedom in South Africa.

The NBI is pleased to be able to honour one of South Africas greatest leaders in such a singular way. It is hoped that all those who have supported the Witwatersrand NBG in the past will continue to share their truly great garden with an ever-widening circle of friends, and in celebrating the life and contribution to South Africa of a leader of great vision, courage and humility, Walter Sisulu.

Press release issued by NBI Marketing and Communication Directorate,
January 2004.


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