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Victoria Tower in Uitenhage
Victoria Tower in Uitenhage
Uitenhage is located in South Africa
 Uitenhage shown within South Africa
Coordinates: 33°46′S 25°24′E / 33.767°S 25.400°E / -33.767; 25.400Coordinates: 33°46′S 25°24′E / 33.767°S 25.400°E / -33.767; 25.400
Country South Africa
Province Eastern Cape
Municipality Nelson Mandela Bay
Established 1804[1]
 • Total 75.35 km2 (29.09 sq mi)
Population (2011)[2]
 • Total 103,639
 • Density 1,400/km2 (3,600/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)[2]
 • Black African 23.8%
 • Coloured 54.7%
 • Indian/Asian 1.2%
 • White 18.4%
 • Other 1.8%
First languages (2011)[2]
 • Afrikaans 68.9%
 • Xhosa 17.9%
 • English 10.4%
 • Other 2.9%
Postal code (street) 6229
PO box 6230
Area code 041

Uitenhage (/ˈjuːtɨnhɡ/; Afrikaans: [œi̯tənˈɦɑːxə]) is a South African town in the Eastern Cape Province. It is well known for the Volkswagen factory located there, which is the biggest car factory on the African continent. The city of Port Elizabeth and the small town of Despatch are located near Uitenhage.


Uitenhage was founded on 25 April 1804 by landdrost (district magistrate) Jacob Glen Cuyler and named in honour of the Cape's Commissioner-General Jacob Abraham Uitenhage de Mist by the Dutch Cape Colony governor, Jan Willem Janssens.[3] Uitenhage formed from part of the district of Graaff Reinet (shortly after its short-lived secession).

The Cape Colony received a degree of independence when "Responsible Government" was declared in 1872. In 1875 the Cape government of John Molteno took over the rudimentary Uitenhage railway site, incorporated it into the Cape Government Railways (CGR), and began construction of the lines connecting Uitenhage to Port Elizabeth and the Southern African interior. Two years later, in 1877, Uitenhage was declared a municipality. [4]

Nearly a hundred years later, as part of the Union of South Africa, Uitenhage became a centre for resistance against Apartheid. In 1985, police opened fire on a funeral procession in Uitenhage, killing a number of unarmed people, in an event that became notorious as an example of police oppression in South Africa under apartheid.[5][6]

In 2001 it was incorporated with Port Elizabeth and Despatch into the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality.


Uitenhage is known for the large industries situated there. The largest of these industries are the Volkswagen and Goodyear factories. An automotive supplier park, Alexander Park Industrial, has also been created directly next to the Volkswagen factory, thus allowing automotive component manufacturers to construct their manufacturing plants close by.

Notable people from Uitenhage[edit]

Notable animals from Uitenhage[edit]



  1. ^ "Chronological order of town establishment in South Africa based on Floyd (1960:20-26)" (PDF). pp. xlv–lii. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Main Place Uitenhage". Census 2011. 
  3. ^ "Uitenhage is founded". sahistory. Retrieved 14 February 2010. 
  4. ^ Burman, Jose (1984), Early Railways at the Cape. Cape Town: Human & Rousseau, p.66. ISBN 0-7981-1760-5
  5. ^ Thornton, R. J. (1990). "The Shooting at Uitenhage, South Africa, 1985: The Context and Interpretation of Violence". American Ethnologist 17 (2): 217–236. doi:10.1525/ae.1990.17.2.02a00020. JSTOR 645077. 
  6. ^ http://www.doj.gov.za/trc/hrvtrans/uiten/bucwa.htm
  7. ^ Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality : Loyiso Bala
  8. ^ Artist hits home with Consciousness Hip Hop
  9. ^ Christo van Rensburg - South African Airways ATP Rankings History
  10. ^ The Captain's Table: Panel: Garth Wright
  11. ^ Lee-Roy Wright

External links[edit]