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Lecturers demand ‘racist’ Gandhi statue removed

Academics at the University of Ghana are demanding a statue of “racist” Gandhi be pulled down.

The statue glorified a man who was “uncharitable in his attitude towards the Black race,” and allowing it to remain made the university appear to hold double-standards, wrote three academics from the University of Ghana.

Professor of African and Gender Studies at the University of Ghana, Akosua Adomako Ampofo, Dr. Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua a senior lecturer at University of Ghana, and Dr. Ọbádélé Kambon, a research fellow and Editor-in-Chief of the Ghana Journal of Linguistics wrote the petiton.

The online petition is addressed to the members of the University of Ghana Council and the chairman Mr. Kwamena Ahwoi. So far it has collected 270 of 500 signatures needed.

The statue was erected on June 14 this year at the recreational quadrangle, it was donated by India’s president Pranab Mukherjee when he visited the campus.

Since then there has been agitation from many students, alumni and Ghanaians over the statue being on campus.

Mahatma Gandhi, born in 1869, was the primary leader of India’s independence movement and is also touted as the architect of a form of non-violent civil disobedience that would influence the world. However, through the world detractors have also pointed to his history of racism towards Africans.

With the slogans ‘Gandhi Must Fall’ and ‘Gandhi For Come Down’ (pidgin for Gandhi must come down), there are calls in Ghana for the immediate withdrawal of the statue.

The three University of Ghana academics are now publicly lending their voices through their petition on change.org.

They call for statues of Africa’s own heroes and heroines on campus to be erected instead.

“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.”

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