Johannesburg – Tshwane officials on Monday said it was still unclear who had defaced the historical statue of Paul Kruger at Church Square in the Pretoria city centre.
“No one has claimed responsibility for it,” said mayoral spokesperson Blessing Manale.
Kruger’s bronze statue had blobs of lime green paint splashed over it on Sunday.
Manale said the mayor had been expecting to receive a petition from the African National Congress Youth League on Tuesday.
They had been calling for the Kruger statue to be removed.
Security had since been tightened at several points around the capital city which have historic statues.
“The city has decided to up security at the Voortrekker Monument, Freedom Park, the City Hall and at the Union Buildings,” Manale said.
The defacing of Kruger comes amid calls for historic statues to be removed from central areas.
Last week, the Economic Freedom Fighters [EFF] in the Nelson Mandela Bay region claimed responsibility for the torching of the War Memorial statue in Uitenhage’s Market Square.
“Unfortunately we could not topple the statue, as the police came and stopped us,” said deputy chairperson for the region, Bo Madwara.
Destroying colonial statues
He said the Uitenhage war memorial was just the tip of the iceberg.
“The EFF has a programme in Nelson Mandela Bay that will seek to destroy all colonial statues that have been identified,” he said.
Calls for historical statues to be uprooted first sparked at the University of Cape last month with students calling for the Cecil John Rhodes statue to be toppled.
After weeks of intense protests, the UCT senate voted in favour of the removal of the statue.