UNC system president wants no return of Confederate statue

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — The interim president of North Carolina’s public universities says he doesn’t want to see a Confederate memorial ripped down by protesters last summer return to its prominent spot on the flagship Chapel Hill campus.

William Roper on Friday denounced the way the statue nicknamed “Silent Sam” was toppled in August, but he says he doesn’t think it should go back.

The statue was seen celebrating white supremacy by some, while others valued the century-old memorial for its historical significance to the campus.

Roper says his top focus is finding a temporary substitute for UNC-Chapel Hill chancellor Carol Folt, who is out next week. She ordered the granite base of the Confederate memorial removed and was ordered out by university governors months before she intended to leave.

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