News24

Mayhem at Zululand campus

2009-11-04 13:13

Durban - University of Zululand students allegedly went on the rampage on Tuesday night, burning a lecture hall and destroying a number of buildings, police said on Wednesday.

"I can confirm that the university property was damaged last night. A case has been opened and no arrests have been made," said Captain Thulani Zwane.

According to student leaders at the university, a lecture hall was completely destroyed and the student representative offices, the library and computer labs were also damaged when students allegedly stoned them.

"The lecture hall was burnt down and several buildings including the library, computer labs, and dining halls were damaged.

"Police had to fire rubber bullets to disperse students," said ANCYL branch chairperson, Thabani Mthabela.

Xolani Ngwezi, the secretary of Inkatha Freedom Party-aligned student wing, Sadesmo, said the SA Students Congress (Sasco) was behind the damage.

He said leaders of the ANC-aligned student wing, Sasco, had walked out of a meeting called to resolve a serious impasse in the student representative council (SRC) elections.

Sasco was declared the winner of last month’s SRC elections after Sadesmo failed to submit its candidate list in time.

The institution’s attempts to persuade Sasco to allow Sadesmo to enter the elections failed and the university took the matter to court.

The Tuesday meeting was called by the head of student services, Dr Mandla Hlongwana to cajole leaders from both organisations to form a students’ governance structure which would look after students’ issues pending a court decision.

A university spokesperson was not immediately available to comment.