UJ reiterates no late applications

2012-01-11 07:15

The University of Johannesburg reiterated that late applications for first year study were closed, after a woman died and at least 20 people were injured in a stampede for places.

“The University is not taking late applications,” registrar Prof Marie Muller said in a statement today.

The only people who would be allowed entry to the university were those who had applied last year and had been conditionally admitted, subject to space and their matric results.

“Now they will hand in their matric results to see if there is a space available.”

Police, metro police and the university’s police were on hand to prevent a repeat of yesterday’s stampede.

The university processed close to 85?300 applications in 2011 for this year’s studies. This was higher than the 65?000 applications processed for the 2011 intake.

It can take only 11?000 under-graduate first year students this year.

It had conditionally admitted 17?000 applicants for first year subject to their final results and space in their chosen programmes.

The Sowetan identified the woman who died as Gloria Sekwana, a nurse who had travelled from London to see her son Kgositsile through the application process.

The government called for a “full investigation” into her death and the stampede.

“This is an unfortunate incident which we hope will be fully investigated,” government spokesperson Jimmy Manyi said in a statement last night.

“Government calls on candidates to take the necessary, timeous steps to secure entry to tertiary institutions and calls on such institutions to take measures to make these processes as smooth and efficient as possible for candidates,” he said.

The university planned to work with the police to investigate the stampede.

Manyi said the government had noted the possibility, as expressed by Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande, of walk-in applications or registrations being outlawed.

After the incident, Nzimande told journalists that crowds descending on universities for late applications was a nationwide problem every year, but that the University of Johannesburg seemed to attract a lot more people.

Beeld reported today that the Democratic Alliance had criticised Nzimande, accusing him of saying last year that the long queues outside the university were a “wonderful problem”.

Nzimande said yesterday that the department was hoping to have centralised applications in place by next year and would provide more information at schools on the applications process.

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