Sir Henry Morton Stanley was commemorated in his home town in Wales
Officials erected a bronze statue to the journalist and politician in Denbigh
Due to his links to colonialism, a public vote about the statute is taking place
Residents will decide if the statute, erected in 2010, should be removed
A country town is staging a two-day public vote over whether to keep a statue of their most famous son – because of intrepid explorer Sir Henry Morton Stanley’s role in Africa. The bronze statue of Stanley – best known for the famous line: ‘Dr Livingstone, I presume?’ – has stood for a decade in his Welsh home town. But the public vote tomorrow and Saturday will be held after a debate was sparked by the Black Lives Matters movement over Stanley’s links with European imperialism, exploitation and colonialism. The statue, pictured, immortalising the moment where he found a missing Scottish explorer in central Africa with the words ‘Dr Livingstone, I presume’, having tracked him down to the shores of Lake Tanganyika The town of Denbigh, North Wales, commissioned an artist to create the bronze of journalist and politician Stanley to mark his exploration of central Africa. But protests over his role working for the infamous Belgian royal family, led to a public consultation to decide whether it should be moved from public view. Stanley is a controversial figure because of his links with Belgian King Leopold II. The monarch committed acts of appalling inhumanity against the population of the Congo Free State – now the Democratic Republic of Congo. His supporters say Stanley was not working for the Belgian despot when the atrocities took place and he has been unfairly tainted. Stanley was immortalised for his famous words ‘Dr Livingstone, I presume’ after finding the Scottish explorer on the shores of Lake Tanganyika where he had been lost in central Africa. But Stanley was born John Rowlands and started life fatherless in Denbigh in 1841. He was put into the workhouse before emigrating to the United States as a teenager. He then fought in the American Civil War before becoming a journalist and explorer, finding the source of the Nile, mapping central Africa’s Great Lakes and the borders of the present-day Democratic Republic of Congo.