Heated exchange at UCT statue protest

Some 30 students took part in the picket calling for the removal of the Cecil John Rhodes statue.

Students march through UCT protesting that the Rhodes statue symbolises racism. Picture: Masa Kekana/EWN

CAPE TOWN - A small group of University of Cape Town (UCT) students marched through campus demanding the Cecil John Rhodes statue be taken down.

They called on the university to remove what they believe symbolises racism.

The protestors say they will continue to picket but are open to discussing the issue with UCT management.

There was a heated confrontation between protesters and Dr Azila Talit Reisenberger when they entered the Beattie Building.

Reisenberger, a religious studies lecturer, asked the students to lower their voices.

The group of around 30 students were singing loudly and chanting inside the building.

One student leader tried to calm the group as some continued heckling.

University traffic officials and campus security are monitoring the protest.

UCT Vice-Chancellor Max Price says an urgent council meeting will be held next month to consider the removal of the statue.

He confirmed members of the student representative council demanded the statue be removed.