Academic programs were discontinued at all Tshwane University of Technology campuses and students were ordered to vacate residences.
Residence property has been damaged in the past and recovery costs have not yet been calculated.
Fears exist for student and staff safety. According to TUT’s Willa de Ruyter, the situation at campuses is unpredictable and flammable. The Young Communist League considers the decision of TUT to be a confirmation that challenges and demands of previously historic black disadvantaged students are being overlooked.
Students insist that the National Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) provides their grants for food, especially for those students who do not live on campus, while also insisting on more accommodation.
The police used shock grenades on Monday to dismiss the students who moved to the office of Higher Education Minister Naledi Pandor in Pretoria.
Lucky Nkambule, head of the Student Council at the TUT’s Soshanguve campus, says the issue of money for food needs to be addressed immediately.
“We can’t study empty stomachs and it’s clear that management doesn’t take us seriously.”
Willa de Ruyter, the university’s spokesperson, says management has met with the students to try and find a solution.
“The safety of the students, staff and property is our first priority. So we decided to close the campuses after the students started demonstrating again.”
In the meantime, students have undertaken to continue the protests.
Source: Netwerk 24, Die Vryburger
SA news team