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

Observer on Saturday - - News - By Sandile Nkam­bule

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.

Re­fused

“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.

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