Amid several calls to pull down a statue of Mahatma Gandhi from the campus of the University of Ghana, the statue’s iconic spectacles were found missing on Tuesday morning.
The spectacles were suspected to have been stolen at night by supporters of a petition that claims the Indian independence icon Mahatma Gandhi was racist and described blacks as inferior.
“We can do the honourable thing by pulling down the statue. It is better to stand up for our dignity than to kowtow to the wishes of a burgeoning Eurasian super-power. Some harm has already been done by erecting the statue,” read the petition signed by thousands of people including professors of the university.
We are of the view that if there should be statues on our campus, then, first and foremost, they should be of African heroes and heroines, who can serve as examples of who we are and what we have achieved as a people.
The controversial statue was donated to the University of Ghana in June by the Indian High Commission to Ghana and erected at one of the school’s main quadrangles.
“At world class universities, even former bastions of slavery, apartheid and white supremacy, statues and other symbols associated with controversial persons have been pulled down or removed,” the petition made reference to several cases of statue removal.
It detailed several writings of Gandhi and speeches that suggest racism and also his “campaign for the maintenance of the caste system right up to his death”.
“We are of the view that if there should be statues on our campus, then, first and foremost, they should be of African heroes and heroines, who can serve as examples of who we are and what we have achieved as a people,” it added.
A movement going by the title #GandhiMustFall has been pushing on social media for the statue to be pulled down.
He has already fallen even in our hearts… The statue is empty #GandhiMustFall— femi Aremu Balogun (@Youngcupid01) October 4, 2016
So they broke off his spectacles so that he sees his fall clearly I presume. Mischief or the contrary… #GandhiMustFall?— Kenneth .A. Darko (@TheKenDarko) October 3, 2016