Louis Botha statue outside Parliament defaced

Cape Town - The statue of Louis Botha outside the gates of Parliament was smeared with red and blue paint on Wednesday night.

The words "Louis Botha Farmer Warrior Statesman" on the base of the statue were covered in red paint, while darker paint was splashed on the statue of Botha on his horse.

News24's Lauren Hess reported that a police officer on duty outside Parliament said the statue was defaced when she arrived at work at 06:00.

Netwerk24 reported that EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi tweeted "Botha must go" along with a picture of the defaced statue, but the party has not claimed responsibility for it.

The incident took place amid a national debate on the future of colonial-era statues around the country. The University of Cape Town Council decided on Wednesday that the statue of Cecil John Rhodes on the steps of the university's upper campus be removed.

Botha fought during the South African War and later became prime minister of the Union of South Africa. He established the South African Party with Jan Smuts, Netwerk24 reported.

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