Martinus Wessel Pretorius, Andrew Murray statues vandalised

The statues of the former colonial era leaders have been defaced with paint.

Martinus Wessel Pretorius statue has been vandalised. Picture: Mia Lindeque/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - A statue of Martinus Wessel Pretorius has just been vandalised less than an hour ago in front of Tshwane City Hall.

This is the latest in a series of colonial statues to be vandalised.

The statue of Martinus Wessel Pretorius has been painted with dark red-brownish paint but no one has yet claimed responsibility for the latest vandalism.

The statue stands outside the Tshwane City Hall in Pretorius street.

Pretorius was the first president of the South African Republic and compiled the constitution of the republic.

Meanwhile, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF)'s Tshwane branch is protesting at Church Square where the Paul Kruger sculpture is encircled by barbed wire.

They have set alight the old national flag at a protest demanding a statue be removed from the area.

EFF leaders have accused the ANC of protecting Afrikaners by refusing to remove the colonial sculpture.

Earlier this week the Cecil John Rhodes statue was removed from the University of Cape Town after a month of protests and debates.

A large crowd of supporters have gathered here at Church Square where the old national flag was set alight while cheers echoed through the streets.

EFF Deputy Chairperson in Tshwane Moafrika Mabongwana says the statue will be removed by tomorrow but stopped short of clarifying whether his members will destroy it.

"We want the statue removed. That is our call as the EFF. Who removes it is not our problem."

Police have erected barbed wire around the statue and are keeping a close eye on protesters.

Meanwhile, a statue of author and reverend Andrew Murray in Wellington in the Western Cape has become another monument to be defaced amid growing calls for the removal of colonial and apartheid era statues.

Yesterday, a statue of Queen Victoria in Port Elizabeth was smeared with green paint.

Authorities in Wellington say the statue of Andrew Murray was splashed with red paint early this morning.

Drakenstein municipality spokesperson Mart-Marie Haasbroek.

"The Andrew Murray statue in Wellington was a symbol of religious heritage in South Africa. The symbol represents reconciliation, peace and love for fellow South Africans and is now being attacked by people's ignorance. Drankenstein Mayor Gesie van Deventer condemns this action strongly."