Rhodes statue falls... off Two Oceans medal

2015-04-04 18:06
(Schalk van Zuydam, AP)

(Schalk van Zuydam, AP)

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Biénne Huisman, City Press

Cape Town - The #RhodesMustFall debate has spilled over to Cape Town's world famous Two Oceans Marathon – which awarded runners with medals emblazoned with the University of Cape Town, but with the statue of Cecil John Rhodes notably absent.

Indeed, it would appear that marathon organisers chose to give controversy a wide berth by banishing Rhodes from the palm-sized medals doled out to exuberant athletes on Saturday, City Press reported.

One runner tweeted after the marathon: "Just looked at my finisher’s medal. It’s UCT upper campus without the Rhodes Statue!"

"Where is the Rhodes statue on the medal? Interesting... #TwoOceans," said another.

"Rhodes has fallen from the Two Oceans medal," tweeted television journalist Lester Kiewit.

The annual 56 km ultra-marathon – dubbed the world’s most beautiful marathon – saw 11 000 runners put through their paces along the Cape Peninsula. There is also a half-marathon of 21.1km.

The men’s race was won by Motlokoa Nkhabutlane from Lesotho in 3:10:27 hours; and the women’s race by Caroline Wöstmann of South Africa in 3:41:23.

The marathon finishes at the University of Cape Town’s campus.

The university has been shrouded in controversy since the bronze statue was defaced on March 9.

Protestors say the statue represents institutionalised racism at the university.

The #RhodesMustFall campaign has triggered a series of demonstrations around the country, including at Rhodes University in Grahamstown and the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban.

Two Oceans general manager Carol Vosloo said the absent statue was "a coincidence".

Read more on:    uct  |  cecil john rhodes  |  cape town  |  two oceans marathon  |  monuments debate

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