Oxford University has been facing pressure to remove the statue of Cecil Rhodes from the facade of Oriel College for years. On Wednesday, the governing body of the college confirmed they have recommended for the monument to be removed following a review on the issues surrounding the presence of the statue. But some members of the public denounced the decision, branding the move as “virtue signalling” and insisted the debate over the statue was “ridiculous.”
One user also questioned the university over the future of the Rhodes Trust the mining magnate and imperialist founded before his death to provide international students with academic scholarships
The user said: “Presumably the Rhodes Trust – which has been donating scholarships to poor but very clever students to attend Oxford – will also be removed.
“The snowflakes of today surely won’t want to receive that?!”
Another simply said: “This is getting ridiculous. Leave the statues alone. Stop giving in to these people.”
In a statement, the governing body said: “The governing body of Oriel College has today voted to launch an independent commission of inquiry into the key issues surrounding the Rhodes statue.
Earlier this month, Black Lives Matter protesters pulled down a statue of slave trader Edward Colston and dumped it into the River Avon in Bristol.
Rhodes was a British businessman, politician and imperialist, born in 1853.
He played a dominant role in southern Africa in the late 19th Century, driving the annexation of vast swathes of land.
An ardent believer in British imperialism, Rhodes and his British South Africa Company founded the southern African territory of Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe and Zambia, which the company named after him in 1895.