…despite seen as a representation of racism, injustice and exploitation.
In Oxford University, a student movement with the slogan Rhodes Must Fall In Oxford, has been quelled following the announcement by governing body of Oriel College that the statue will remain.
Cecil Rhodes, a man who is believed to have made racism an official ideology and let whites kill black people especially as an imperialist British colonialist in Africa.
He was a prominent 19-century British imperialist and magnate who was the prime minister of the Cape colony in South Africa and is believed to have made his wealth by exploiting Africa and Africans.
The African territories of Southern Rhodesia and Northern Rhodesia (modern day Zimbabwe and Zambia respectively) were named after him.
As an alumnus of the Oriel College, he left a sizable amount of wealth to Oxford at his death in 1902. He formed De Beers diamond-mining company and is celebrated in Oxford with a glaring statue.
The student movement aims to “decolonize the institutional structures and physical space in Oxford and beyond.”
According to them, the statue is an emblem of imperialism and racism, a constant remainder of racism and human exploitation.
In a statement issued by the College, the months of debate following the wild student drive to remove the statue was a remainder “of the complexity of history and of the legacies of colonialism still felt today.”
The student group has however sworn to maintain its grip saying “We will be redoubling our efforts and meeting over the weekend to discuss our next actions.”