Remove all colonial statues - Zuma's son

2015-04-02 14:02
A statue of British colonialist Cecil John Rhodes at the University of Cape Town near the city centre of Cape Town, South Africa. (Schalk van Zuydam, AP)

A statue of British colonialist Cecil John Rhodes at the University of Cape Town near the city centre of Cape Town, South Africa. (Schalk van Zuydam, AP)

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Durban - President Jacob Zuma's son Edward Zuma, who expressed a strong anti-foreigner sentiment on Wednesday, has called for the blanket removal of all colonial statues.

Zuma told News24 that he supported the drive to replace the statue of colonialist Cecil John Rhodes at the University of Cape Town (UCT), as well as that of King George V at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).

“Black people need to stop being apologetic about their history,” insisted Zuma, who is the president's eldest son. 

“I am fully behind of social movement. The King George V statue needs to go. The colonialist time is long gone.

"At the University of Cape Town they need to put a statue of a black struggle stalwart and at University of KwaZulu-Natal they need to put a statue of King Shaka Zulu,” suggested Zuma.

The statue of King George V, situated on the Howard College Campus, was defaced on Friday last week. The statue, which stands outside the Howard College Building, was splattered with white paint and graffiti. It was reported that the words “end white privilege" were written on the statue.

The defacing followed a protest at UCT over the Rhodes statue on the university’s upper campus. The statue has occupied a prominent spot at UCT for more than 80 year.

UKZN’s Indu Moodley would not comment on Zuma’s statement, but said the university was investigating the unlawful actions committed.

She confirmed that no arrests had been made.

Moodley said the university had set up an urgent naming committee to review the status quo of all statues and buildings on all its campuses. 

“The meeting will take place shortly after the Easter recess, when members of the committee become available. A meeting between the university’s Vice-Chancellor Dr Albert van Jaarsveld, and Sasco has also been scheduled,” she said.

“The university is deeply saddened and disappointed by the group of protestors who chose not to raise their concerns regarding the King George V statue through the proper channels established within UKZN.

“The university supports the students’ rights to exercise lawful freedom of expression and encourages open debate and discussion, however, it does not condone any form of unlawful behaviour on the part of any student or staff member,” said Moodley, adding that the university urged all students and staff to exercise restraint and care in all manner of expression.

Read more on:    uct  |  durban  |  cape town  |  politics  |  monuments debate

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