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Africans against Gandhi: Statue pulled down in Ghana, while court to rule if Gandhi deserves a statue in Malawi

A campaign with hashtag #Gandhimustfall trended on social media in Ghana and in South Africa simultaneously in 2016, following the unveiling of the Mahatma Gandhi Statue.

The security personnel of the University of Ghana in Legon, Accra, on December 12, were seen demolishing the statue of Mahatma Gandhi, which was erected at the recreational quadrangle of the university after it was donated to the University by the former Indian  President, Pranab Mukherjee, in 2016.

A University of Ghana official is reported to have told Radio Univers that “We received an order from above and we can’t tell you why it is being taken down’.

Meanwhile, in Malawi, it was reported on November 30, that the High court in Blantyre, was expected to pass its judgment within 30 days, regarding whether or not the Gandhi Statue which came with an aid of US $20 million from the Indian Government should be allowed installation. The erection process was halted after #Gandhimustfall movement gained momentum in 2016.

The erection and unveiling of the statue in the Ghana university campus had created a controversy among the lecturers and students of the university way back in 2016 when a section of them opposed the construction citing passages written by Gandhi which claimed Indians were “infinitely superior” to black Africans. They were of the opinion that the statue should be pulled down on the grounds that Gandhi was a ‘racist’.

An online petition was also launched in 2016 against the casted Mahatma Gandhi’s statue which garnered over 2000 signatures of students who stood by the opinion that the statue should be pulled down.

A campaign with hashtag #Gandhimustfall trended on social media in Ghana and in South Africa simultaneously in 2016, following the unveiling of the Statue by the then Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Ernest Aryeetey and the then Indian President.

Subsequently, the Government of Ghana had in October 2016, announced to relocate the statue of Mahatma Gandhi from the campus, following protests and the incident of defacing of the statue.

A former Director of the Institute of African Studies, Professor Akosua Adomako Ampofo, started the campaign for the removal of the statue. Ampofo together with another professor at the Institute, Dr. Obadéle Kambon, urged members of the council to consider the petition arguing that, Gandhi was racist against black people and honouring him would set the wrong example for students.

Now in the wake of this ongoing controversy, it has been reported that the Mahatma Gandhi statue erected at the recreational quadrangle of the University of Ghana which had been facing the wrath of Africans since its conception, has been demolished.

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