To some it was a sinister symbol of colonialism that needed to fall in order for transition to happen, and for some it was a solid part of our country’s heritage. Either way you look at it, the hotly contested Cecil John Rhodes statue at UCT ‘fell’ yesterday.

The tension was palpable as the crowd swelled around the statue before the 5 pm time of removal. Struggle songs were being sung and even an unfortunate bit of hate speech was audible from the crowd as the deadline loomed. But the time eventually came and went, with no indication as to why proceedings were running late.

A jubilant, pop-up crowd suddenly emerged from the field below, storming the fence and settling near the statue.

Eventually it happened. Watch the video below that we shot for full effect.

 

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