Oxford University sparks race row after it sent out a security alert about an 'intruder' who was visiting former student
OXFORD University has been accused of racism after it sent out a security alert about an 'intruder' – who turned out to be a visiting former student.
Oluwafemi Nylander, 22, hit out at the world-famous educational institution after his photograph was emailed to undergraduates along with a warning.
A CCTV image was sent to all students and staff at the college warned them to be ‘vigilant’ about an ‘unauthorised person’.
Harris Manchester College added the mystery man's ‘intentions’ were unclear.
Yesterday, the campus denied race had anything to do with the alert insisting it would be issued about any intruder on college grounds.
But Mr Nylander, who graduated last year with a Politics, Philosophy and Economics degree, believes otherwise.
He told the Daily Mail: "Had this been another student of a different colour there would definitely have been a different reaction.
"Oxford as an institution is shambolic. There are more Etonians at undergraduate level than black students.
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"You are more likely to walk through a college in a suit and tie than with an afro. Your presence is an anomaly."
Harris Manchester said an academic raised the alarm when a man he did not recognise entered his bedroom at 11.30pm on Thursday.
The man quickly apologised adding he had the wrong door.
The academic saw the same man again outside the building the next morning.
An email was then sent out which read: ‘This is a serious reminder that this wonderful and safe environment in which we live and work can be taken advantage of.
'We must all do our bit to maintain vigilance against unauthorised persons in the college.’
Mr Nylander, who attended Regent’s Park College at Oxford, said he entered the college to pick up a key from a friend’s office and then became locked in for the night.
Annette Duffell, the college bursar, said: "As far as the college was concerned, we had an intruder on our premises and so we issued a picture.
"It was purely a security issue. Anything else is conjecture. We were responding as we would to any overnight security issue."
Mr Nylander was a leading campaigner in Oxford’s ‘Rhodes Must Fall’ movement which called on the university to remove a statue of imperialist Cecil Rhodes.
Last year he dressed in chains and stood to protest against the Codrington Library and commemoration of its founder, Christopher Codrington, who made his fortune from the slave trade.
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