South African Students Congress

Statement on chaos in the University of Free State!

10 August 2010

We are extremely perturbed and concerned by the turn of events in the University of Free State (UOFS). Not only is this institution renowned for its racism, but is now acquiring a name for its autocracy and lack of democratic ethos. Not only has the Vice-chancellor and his lapdogs unlawfully suspended student organizations, they have also suspended the SRC and postponed SRC elections indefinitely. The management of the University of Free State is allergic to democracy and prefers dictatorship and rule by decree.

We call on the management of UOFS to reinstate the democratically elected SRC and apologize to the public for this gratuitous disrespect for democracy. We call on all our members and students in UOFS to ensure that they defeat these reactionary tendencies that are rearing their ugly heads in the already reactionary UOFS. We also call on all progressive academics in the UOFS to stand up against the tyranny of Jonathan Jansen and co.

We are convinced that the suspension of the SRC and student organizations in UOFS has nothing to do with ensuring stability in the institution but is simply an attempt to intimidate and exclude students during fee increment processes. These are cheap tactics not worthy of a Professor such as Jonathan Jansen, but for some reason he seems less inclined towards democracy and consultation.

Although we are angered by the occurrences in UOFS, we are not surprised that this is done under the watch of a Black Vice-chancellor. It has always been our considered view that a change in the skin colour of management does not mean a change in essence. We have always been worried that management changes are often cosmetic rather than radical. We hope that Jonathan Jansen is not acting as a black stooge of the white elite in the University of Free State.

For details Contact:

Mbulelo Mandlana (President)
071 879 3408
Lazola Ndamase (Secretary General)
082 679 8718