The statue of the freed slave Modeste Testas erected in 2019 in Bordeaux in memory of his slave past has been degraded. The municipality has announced that it is filing a complaint.
The city hall of Bordeaux has announced its intention to file a complaint against X following the degradation of a statue of a slave, erected in memory of the city’s slave trade. The municipality sees it as a “probably racist” act.
A bronze statue representing, on a human scale, a slave bought by two Bordeaux brothers in the 18th century and then freed, was discovered the same day whitewashed with white or lime paint to the bust.
Statue of Al Pouessi, slave freed by a vandalized Bordeaux slave
This statue is a symbol of the fight for equality.@MemorialSlave Bordeaux city hall request @PierreHurmic to sanctify this symbol of the crime against humanity
Let’s go file a complaint against X. pic.twitter.com/tsSl6LWItc
– Karfa Sira DIALLO 🥝 (@KarfaDIALLO) September 13, 2021
A “clearly political” act
If the racist nature of the act is confirmed, “it is an ultra-violent attack on everything that this statue represents, an attack on women, a racist attack, an attack on the memory of people deported within the framework of the slave trade, an attack on art ”for Stéphane Gomot, municipal councilor in charge of heritage and memory.
Denouncing an act “clearly political”, Karfa Diallo, elected regional, also announced to file a complaint on behalf of his association Mémoires et Partages, which promotes the memory of slavery. By midday, the statue had been cleaned.
The statue of the slave Modeste Testas (1765-1870) was inaugurated in May 2019 on the banks of the Garonne in the presence of his Haitian descendant. This is one more step in the recognition by Bordeaux of its past enrichment linked to the slave trade.