SASCO Outraged by the attack and Arrest on students at University of Free State (QwaQwa Campus) in Bloemfontein.
The South African Student’s Congress (SASCO) has learned with utter disgust the assault on students by private securities at the University of Free State. Some students were hospitalized and some arrested following the assault by private security at their respective residences on Thursday night. We condemn in strongest terms the use of live ammunition in dealing when managing protest.
The attack follows student protest that emanates from a fee adjustment deadlock between student leadership and university management. Assaulting and harassing students will never resolve the crisis and silence the voice of students but will further polarize the situation.
We have consistently rejected the use of private securities on campus during protests; these companies do not value students lives but value the profit made during the protest. Students are not punching bags either shooting objects; the NEC will send a strong delegation to visit the victim and meet with university management.
We also note with great concern the postponement of examinations at the Central University of Technology (CUT) following deadlock on fee adjustment. The vice chancellor and his cronies failed to explain in a students mass meeting, the reason behind the fee hike.
We applaud our deployees both in UFS and CUT for rejecting fee adjustments proposals. We call on other SRCs to fight back should management impose fee adjustments.
These incidents should serve as a bell ringer to President Zuma to release Fees Commission Report. We have written to both ANC and President demanding the release of the report; all those efforts fell on deaf ears.
The further delay to release the report will have far-reaching implications for the next academic year.
President Zuma must pronounce on fee-free education for the poor and working class immediately before the Mid-Term Budget by the Minister of Finance on 27-10-2017. Failure to heed this call will live us with no choice but to fight back, we have been patient for too long.
We wish the 2017 class of matriculants best of luck as they begin with their examinations. We call on parents and community members to give all the necessary support to their children during this difficult period.
We hope and believe the basic education department has put everything in place to avoid disturbances, ranging from the safety of learners and stealing of question papers.
The struggle continues
Issued on behalf of NEC by:
071 875 2224
SASCO Secretary General
071 875 2209
060 308 2415