ANC, al­liance jointly beg stu­dents to re­turn to class

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG — The ANC’s sec­re­tary gen­eral Gwede Man­tashe, to­gether with its al­liance sec­re­tariat, have called for univer­sity stu­dents to go back to class.

In a joint state­ment is­sued on Sun­day, sec­re­taries gen­eral of the ANC, SACP, Cosatu and Sanco said they met and de­lib­er­ated on the cur­rent cri­sis in higher ed­u­ca­tion, amongst other mat­ters.

“The al­liance sup­ports the le­git­i­mate strug­gle of stu­dents for free ed­u­ca­tion for the poor and we reaf­firm our col­lec­tive com­mit­ment to the pro­gres­sive re­al­i­sa­tion of this goal. We urge the He­her Com­mis­sion to con­clude its work speed­ily.”

ANC al­liance part­ners said they were con­cerned about the dam­ag­ing long-term im­pact that the clo­sure of in­sti­tu­tions of higher learn­ing would have on stu­dents and so­ci­ety. “Should the aca­demic year be post­poned, some of the po­ten­tial con­se­quences in­clude ma­tric­u­lants not be­ing ac­com­mo­dated dur­ing 2017 and a shortage of new grad­u­ates in fields such as medicine. We urge . . . stu­dents to go back to class and to com­plete the aca­demic year.”

The al­liance said it also urged stu­dents to pro­tect their aca­demic in­fra­struc­ture and to de­sist from vi­o­lence and de­struc­tion of public prop­erty.

Mean­while, the case against #FeesMustFall leader and for­mer Wits SRC pres­i­dent Mcebo Dlamini was post­poned in the Jo­han­nes­burg Mag­is­trate’s Court yes­ter­day.

Pros­e­cu­tor Steven Ru­bin said the case needed to be post­poned to to­day so that Dlamini’s ad­dress can be ver­i­fied.

The court heard that Dlamini had pro­vided po­lice with his Wits Univer­sity res­i­dence ad­dress.

Ru­bin said this ad­dress could not be ac­cepted be­cause the in­sti­tu­tion would be clos­ing in a mat­ter of weeks.

Dlamini’s lawyer Mongezi Ntanga said he had pro­vided his mother’s ad­dress. This ad­dress would be ver­i­fied by po­lice, Ru­bin told the court. Dlamini would re­main in cus­tody at the Cleve­land po­lice sta­tion. He faces charges of public vi­o­lence, theft, ma­li­cious dam­age to prop­erty and as­sault.

Dlamini seemed calm while stand­ing at the dock yes­ter­day morn­ing. He was dressed in a green hoodie with a black and white kef­fiyeh around his neck. He oc­ca­sion­ally looked back into the public gallery, in search of fa­mil­iar faces.

Ntanga told the court that Dlamini had to be re­leased be­cause he was writ­ing an exam to­day.

Mag­is­trate B Roux re­fused his re­quest after Ru­bin said Dlamini had not at­tended most of his classes.

Roux then asked if Dlamini had ex­pe­ri­enced any prob­lems while in cus­tody. He was told by Dlamini’s lawyer that he could not re­main in po­lice cells be­cause he has asthma.

Roux said Dlamini needed to con­sult with his lawyers to re­ceive med­i­ca­tion.

Out­side the court­room, at least 50 stu­dents re­mained out­side await­ing Dlamini’s re­lease. They left soon after Dlamini was taken back to the court’s hold­ing cells.

Dlamini was ar­rested in the early hours of Sun­day morn­ing at his res­i­dence at Wits Univer­sity. — AFP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Zimbabwe

© PressReader. All rights reserved.