“Unity in education towards free quality education, the year of Oliver Tambo, the year of Free education”
The South African Student Congress celebrate 26 years of its existence and 96 years of unbroken student struggles. SASCO was formed on the 6th of September 1991 at Rhodes University Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape by South African National Students Congress (SANSCO) a predominantly black students organisation and the National Union of South Africa (NUSAS) a white students organisation.
Amidst negotiations between National Party and the liberation movement, about 600 delegates from all corners of South Africa gathered in Rhodes to give a clear picture of a future that was being crafted-a future where blacks and whites lived together in harmony and worked together for a prosperous South Africa.
SASCO carries a history of being the radical and militant student movement without losing revolutionary morality and discipline.
Immediately after unbanning of political parties, it this generation that subordinated all personal interests to those of the organisation and students interests spent six days under one roof with a view of building a single non-racial student organisation in higher institutions of learning. This is the culture that we all should emulate at all material times.
SASCO has contributed immensely to the advancement of the National Democratic Revolution and has played a pivotal role in policy making of the ANC. SASCO is regarded as the reservoir of intellectuals for the broader mass democratic movement because of its ability to produce cadres that are ideologically sound and entrenched in the revolutionary discipline.
For the past 26 years, SASCO has played as a shield of students and advocated for their interests uncompromising. Through our existence, we have scored numerous victories, amongst others are these:
- Access to all institutions of choice regardless of gender, race and class position.
- Improved loan and bursary scheme
- Building of two universities
- Demerger of Medunsa from University of Limpopo
- Building of medical schools from previously disadvantage institutions
- Building of decent lecture venues
- Transformation of the curriculum
- Decent transport
- Decent Student accommodation
Fighting for free quality education, to be implemented starting from 2018, amongst other victories the organisation has achieved.
The struggle continues!
We the students re-commit to strengthen our fighting capacity for quality student services, for the expansion of the higher education system, for the improvement and better services in the FET sector. The struggle against financial and academic exclusions, skyrocketing fees, racism and sexism in institutions of higher learning remain the key focus of our program.
We celebrate this milestone in a year when Oliver Tambo would have turned 100 years; Tambo remains an inspiration figure to many South Africans for his commendable contribution towards the liberation of South Africans against the oppressive colonial rule. In honour of O R Tambo, we commit to strengthen unity within the organization and reposition SASCO to its dispensation in the society-that of advocating for students interests without fear or favour.
We salute the generations before us that have contributed towards the building of this gigantic student organization, their contribution will never go unnoticed.
SASCO will continue to be consistent defenders of students and fight for absolute transformation of higher education sector to be accessible to the poor masses of our people.
Issued on behalf of the NEC, by:
Enquiries contact Thandile Mangele 0113761000, 0786738442