Paul Kruger statue defaced again

Genevieve Quintal and Karabo Ngoepe, News24

Pretoria - The bronze sentries at the Paul Kruger statue in the Pretoria CBD have been defaced again.

Green paint was thrown on the sentries in Church Square on Monday night.

The area around the statue had been cordoned off with yellow police tape on Tuesday morning.

The City of Tshwane was not immediately available to comment.

Democratic Alliance Tshwane councillor Christo van der Heever on Tuesday said it was the city's responsibility to protect the statue and other heritage sites.

The opposition party expected those who were responsible to be arrested.

It was not yet clear who was behind the defacing of the statue.

"This kind of action forms part of an irresponsible campaign leading towards the local elections next year dividing the people of South Africa," Van Der Heever said in a statement.

Monuments and statues were part of the country's history.

"The protection of our heritage should therefore allow for the diversity of voices and seek to present an inclusive view on the history of our country rather than choosing and promoting a single version of the truth.

"The protection of our heritage must be guided by the rights and freedoms guaranteed in our Constitution," said Van Der Heever.

Earlier this year there was a spate of attacks on statues and monuments around the country, most from the apartheid era.

The Pretoria Paul Kruger statue was one of them.

Others defaced were the Mahatma Gandhi statue in Johannesburg, Louis Botha’s in front of Parliament, the statue of a soldier in Uitenhage, Queen Victoria’s in Port Elizabeth, Paul Kruger in Krugersdorp, King George V’s at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and the The Burger Monument, in Burgersdorp.

Last month, the nose from a statue of colonialist Cecil John Rhodes at the Rhodes Memorial in Cape Town was cut off with an angle grinder.