On 6 September 2020, the Daily Maverick published an op-ed written by former senior researcher Maanda Makwarela. The op-ed discusses the heavy toll that participating in the #RUReferenceList protests in 2016 has had on Yolanda Dyantyi, who was subsequently permanently expelled by Rhodes University. Yolanda Dyantyi was 19-years-old at the time of the protests.
In the op-ed, Maanda describes how harmful the characterisation of Yolanda, as just "an angry black girl" has been used as a way to discredit her protest and delegitimise her concerns. This characterisation has also been used to single her out and punish her for participating in the protest.
Maanda writes that: "Dyantyi is a symbol of opposition to gender-based violence and rape culture 365 days a year. In refusing to accept the status quo, she embodies the bravery that young women are encouraged to possess. As a country, we have to ask if we value the sacrifices made by protesters like Dyantyi, who force us to examine uncomfortable realities and help to spur change."