News24

One person still in hospital after stampede

2012-01-11 14:50

Johannesburg - All but one of the people admitted to hospital after the fatal stampede at the University of Johannesburg have been discharged, the university said on Wednesday.

"All [were] discharged except for one in 1 Military Hospital," said Charmaine du Plessis, corporate communications manager.

In total, 20 people were taken to various hospitals in Gauteng while less serious injuries were treated on the scene.

The last person remaining in hospital has been transferred from Milpark to 1 Military Hospital.

The vice chancellor of the university, Ihron Rensburg, and registrar Professor Marie Muller will visit the injured person on Wednesday.

They will then accompany Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande on a visit to the family of Gloria Sekwena, who died in the stampede on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, security authorities had their hands full on Wednesday monitoring access to the university.

‘Treating us like dogs’


People standing at the university's gates were allowed in by security officials and university staff only if they had their conditional application documentation.

One angry mother shouted when they would not let her in, saying she had left the paperwork at home.

"I came here since Friday, but could not get in. But now you are also refusing me entry. You are treating us like dogs," said Colleen Jacobs.

She complained that she would now have to take more time off work to get her son into college.

Prospective student Bafana Gumede was still hoping for a chance to be allowed in, but said he realised he might have to look for something else.

"I will never ever come to the institution again - the congestion, overcrowding here will probably make it impossible for me to enjoy my studies," he said.

Earlier, Johannesburg metro police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Wayne Minnaar advised motorists to avoid the area around the university where student hopefuls had started queuing again.

Prediction of police brutality


The Pan Africanist Youth Congress called for Nzimande's resignation on Wednesday.

"We call on the minister to do the honourable thing and resign his position," Payco said in a statement.

"He has proven not once but too many times that he is unable to fulfil his duties."

Payco predicted that others would die "through police brutality" when students started protesting against financial institutions next month.

The organisation blamed the ANC government for what it called the "shambles" in education, specifically for black children, and said Nzimande was out of touch.

Sekwana died and more than 20 people were injured when people queuing outside the gates surged forward on Tuesday.

Applications

The university has since closed late applications and said it would only process the 17 500 conditional applications it granted last year.

These were based on applications made in 2011 and which were subject to matric results and available space.

There have been 7 000 late applications submitted to the university since Monday.

Last year, it received 85 300 applications in 2012. It has 11 000 places for first year undergraduate studies.

Nzimande said the government was considering ending the late application practice and planned to roll out a centralised applications system, already being used in KwaZulu-Natal.

There were also plans to build another two universities in Mpumalanga.

In a statement earlier on Wednesday, the government called for a full investigation into the incident.

"The improvements in matric pass rates... should be cause for celebration, not tragedy... This is an unfortunate incident which we hope will be fully investigated," it said.

Comments
  • Stewart - 2012-01-11 15:39

    Phumezo...I think it is time you became an "African Learner" and brushed up on your spelling and grammatical skills. After you have done that....GET A LIFE!!

  • George - 2012-01-11 15:41

    Ok maybe I'm wrong, but the old saying "witch came first, the chicken or the egg" The point I'm making is between jobs and education, without education you cant get a job and you cant get a job without been educated. Educated people still cant get a job because the is no work, would it not be better to focus on job creation then all the rest should follow

  • erhardvz - 2012-01-11 15:53

    Phumezo I suppose the people should rather go to the "excelent" state hospitals provided by the ANC.

      George - 2012-01-11 16:10

      @ erhardvz, and wait in the departure lounge

  • erhardvz - 2012-01-11 16:46

    @George I'm going nowhere boet. By the way it is which, not witch. I do however agree with you on the jobs issue, but know that the private sector will not create new jobs before the ANC change the labour laws.

      George - 2012-01-11 17:17

      @ erhardvz Sorry not educated but have a job. U should join news24, they seem worse off than me

      George - 2012-01-11 17:35

      @ erhardvz, state hospitals book in are knowen as departure lounges as once you in you sometimes dont come out

  • erhardvz - 2012-01-11 18:55

    @George... ok I understand now about the departure lounge, good one. (I thought you wanted me to go to the departure lounge at ORTIA and not come back) I hope NHI will solve the problem with the health system, because South Africa deserves better.

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