An African tutor at Oriel College has said Oxford dons should promote equality by raising awareness of places in the world where there is work to be done, rather than 'throwing tantrums' over a statue. 

Dr Marie Kawthar Daouda, from Morocco, said that anti-Cecil Rhodes 'virtue signalling has little to no effect' as she called for 'less emotivity' in the way that academics respond to the British imperialist.

Her comments came after around 100 academics at the University of Oxford said they would refuse requests to give tutorials to Oriel College’s undergraduates amid a row over a statue of Rhodes.

Earlier this month, the Department of Politics and International Relations (DPIR) at Oxford University also condemned Oriel College’s decision not to remove its Rhodes statue from outside the college building as it argued that his 'racist and patriarchal views' were at odds with the values of the university.

But in a statement to The Daily Telegraph, Dr Daouda, a lecturer in French at Oriel, said she was 'perplexed' by the response from the department.

She said: “As an African female tutor at Oriel, I would be glad to see less emotivity in the way some members of the university deal with Rhodes and with the whole race craze in general.”

Dr Daouda added: “Equally, Victorian and Edwardian patriarchy was in many ways still better than the conditions girls and women currently endure in several African countries. On the virtue-signalling scale, some causes definitely score higher than others.

“The DPIR is in an ideal position to promote equality and diversity by raising awareness about places in the world where there is still much more work to be done than under the dreaming spires.

“Fussing that much over a statue is a dazzling sign of Western privilege.”

In May, Oriel College was accused of 'institutional racism' after its governing body said it would not seek to move the controversial statue of the British imperialist from its position outside the college.

An independent inquiry to examine Rhodes’ legacy was set up in June last year after the governing body of Oriel College 'expressed their wish' to remove the statue.

A majority of members on the commission supported the college’s original wish to remove the statue, but in May the college decided against the removal, arguing that there were 'considerable obstacles'.

Last month, some Oxford University lecturers pledged not to assist Oriel College with its outreach work and admissions interviews, and they refused to attend or speak at talks, seminars and conferences sponsored by the college as they opposed its association with a statue that 'glorifies colonialism'.

Addressing the boycott, Dr Daouda said: “Earlier this summer, the only disruption following the call for boycotting Oriel only affected a single one-hour tutorial, which I ended up teaching.

“The anti-Rhodes virtue signalling has little to no effect aside from showing the students that they are expendable hostages and teaching them that even respectable academics from one of the most prestigious universities cannot see a statue without throwing a tantrum.”