Wits University says it’ll be business as usual on Monday despite looming student protest

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Wits University says it will be open and operational on Monday, despite calls from student groups for a national shutdown of all tertiary education institutions.

Spokesperson, Shirona Patel, says university management have met and will join the vice chancellors of other public universities to address the demands underlying the spate of student protests that swept the country last week.

Patel says management met with students on Friday to engage on their concerns.

“Some of the major demands included the postponement of the academic year to the 30th of March, that all students be allowed to register and graduate irrespective of the debt they owe the University, that there be no increases for 2021 and that all students who have been given residence offers be allowed to occupy residences immediately. Another demand was that all suspension orders be uplifted with immediate effect,” she says.

Below is an infographic on the reasons behind the Wits University student protests: 



Shutdown of universities

The South African Union of Students (SAUS) says all Student Representative Council leaders are in support of its decision to shutdown all SA’s 26 universities from today.

SAUS says the protests will continue until their decisions are met.

The South African Students Congress is also in support of the action.

The students want the scrapping of students’ R13 billion historical debt, among others:

They have also called for an end to brutality against students following the death of Mthokozisi Ntumba during Wits University students’ protest.

The 35-year-old Ntumba, who was a public servant, was caught in the middle of the skirmish, when police fired rubber bullets on students.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has visited his family and promised to ensure justice.

Malema addressing media on this in the video below: