Govt to relocate Ghandi's statue from Legon campus

Govt to relocate Ghandi's statue from Legon campus

The Government of Ghana has decided to relocate the statue of Mahatma Ghandi from the campus of the University of Ghana in Legon, Accra, following protests and defacing of the statue which was recently erected and unveiled.

There is a controversy among the lecturers of the university over the erection and unveiling of the statue of Gandhi on the campus.

While a section of them are agitating that the statue be pulled down on the grounds that Ghandi was a racist, others insist it should stay.

Read also: Over 1,300 sign petition to have statue of Gandhi on Legon campus removed

On Monday night the statue was defaced by some unknown persons suspected to be sympathisers with the #GandhiMustFall movement.

A statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration in Ghana on Wednesday said government want to relocate the statue from the university to ensure its safety and to avoid the controversy on campus which was being a distraction of the “strong ties of friendship that has existed over the years.”

The statement therefore urged Ghanaians to look beyond the comments attributed to Gandhi and acknowledge his role as one of the most outstanding personalities of the last century who demonstrated that non-violent resistance could effect great change.

It said the Ministry has been following with deep concern the acrimony generated by the recent campaign by a group of lecturers and students of the University of Ghana for the removal of the statue of the Indian Nationalist leader, on grounds of the latter's alleged past racist comments.

The statue, it said was unveiled by the Indian President, Shri Prenab Mukhereje during his State visit to Ghana in June this year.

It said the “unfortunate verbal attack on Mahatma Gandhi is effectively an attack on an Indian Nationalist Hero and icon who is revered and cherished by over one billion people who are either citizens of India or persons of Indian decent.”

In a global interconnected world where conversations that take place on social media are shared in real time, there is the potential to create disaffection not only at the level of Government relations, but also between people not only in our country but all over the world, it added.

It said Ghana's relations with India date back to the early 50s when first President Dr Kwame Nkrumah struck a strong bond of friendship with the late Jawaharlal Nehru, India's first Prime Minister. 

“Diplomatic relations were soon established after Ghana's independence in 1957. The two countries have since shared common positions on many issues of international concern. Ghana and India have championed the struggle for the liberation of oppressed peoples around the world and were strong in their condemnation of the obnoxious policies of the apartheid regime in South Africa.”

It added that the statue was erected on the university campus with the consent of the authorities and that the university was not compelled by government to accept the statue.

“While acknowledging that human as he was, Mahatma Gandhi may have had his flaws, we must remember that people evolve. He inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world.”

 Writer's email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Follow @enochfrimpong

Connect With Us : 0242202447 | 0551484843 | 0266361755 | 059 199 7513 |