STUDENT WANTS COURT TO COMPEL SCOT TO REGISTER HIM
Second year Computer Science student files urgent application in court seeking an order compelling tertiary institution to enter his name into register for returning students
Asecond year Computer Science student has taken the Swaziland College of Technology (SCOT) to court where he is seeking an order of court compelling the tertiary institution to register his name for the current academic year.
Similo Masuku who was deregistered after failing his second year has taken the institution which has been cited as the first respondent, the registrar as the second, the head of department (HOD) as the third, the ministry of education and training as the fourth and the attorney general as the fifth respondent to court for not considering him in the current academic year.
Represented by lawyer Jabulani Maphalala, Masuku in his papers filed at the High Court submitted that during the year 2014, he successfully applied for tertiary learning at the institution and was provisionally offered a place to study for a Diploma in Computer Science (DCS) which is a four year course.
The urgent application was filed before High Court Judge Mzwandile Fakudze who is yet t hear arguments by both parties.
Masuku stated that he was enrolled and began his studies for the first year after government had offered him a scholarship, unfortunately he did not make it as he was not successful at the end of the academic year.
As a consequence to his failure, the scholarship from government was withdrawn and he had to solicit a private sponsor for his studies. He continued with his studies and eventually passed for the first year and moved to the second year.
After serving his internship with a Nhlangano based company, he stated that he reported to the institution in order to register for his second year as he was again not successful after it had ended.
“I reported to the college on September 7 2017 for registration process but was taken aback when the Registrar flatly refused to register me and no clear reason was advanced for such conduct save to say it was already late as the date for registration had passed,” Masuku submitted.
“I am advised and verily believe that the Registrar was at all material times acting within the course and scope of his employment when he refused to get me registered as a returning student of the institution and that his conduct rendered the first respondent (SCOT) vicariously liable for his actions,’ Masuku submitted.
He stated, in his papers, that he has reason to believe that the conduct of the registrar is unwarranted and uncalled for and falls short of the standard of professionalism expected of a person holding the office he holds as he is allegedly acted like a person harbouring a grudge against him (applicant) as he allegedly treats him in a different way than the other students.
He further submitted that the registrar was not candid with the truth when he allegedly said the registration process date had elapsed since the day he came for registration was actually the last day of registration.
He alleged that the third respondent (HOD) a lecturer in his course openly told him that even if he were to be registered as a student, he (applicant) would again fail at the end of the academic year as the other students had already written some tests.
He perceived this as victimisation on his part because there is no jurisdiction whatsoever for such treatment.
He submitted that he has a clear right to the relief he is seeking because he is a student of the institution by virtue of having commenced studying there before the conduct of the registrar denying him access to continue with his studies without any valid and legally justifiable reason. He argues that this is in violation of his constitutionally entrenched fundamental rights pertaining to equality before the law and right to administrative justice.
He argued that he has never engaged in any misconduct which could justify deprivation of his right to access to education or to freely pursue a career of his choice without nay hindrance from anybody.
In view of the circumstances of his case, he submitted that it is apparent that the High Court would be justified to dispense with the normal rules relating to service, forms and time limits and determine this matter on an urgent basis.