Rhodes goes quietly amid jubilation

09 April 2015 | Story by Newsroom

The statue of Cecil John Rhodes had finally fallen after a month of rolling protest about UCT's colonial symbols and heritage, and calls for greater transformation.

A bound Cecil John Rhodes statue was lifted from its plinth on upper campus. It swiveled east and west moments before coming to rest on the back of a flatbed truck. And then, with an upturned bucket on his head and dripping paint and refuse, made his final exit along Madiba Circle; the event was not without its ironies.

The removal of the statue was preceded by a meeting outside Bremner where a range of speakers, from trade union representatives to protesting school students, expressed their support for the #RhodesMustFall movement. It was the meeting's subsequent march to upper campus that electrified proceedings, as the massive group sang and stamped their approval of Rhodes' statue being toppled from its central vantage point.

Story by Abigail Calata, Yusuf Omar and Helen Swingler. Image by Michael Hammond.


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