TUT is not the vice chancellor's tuck shop - SRC

2016-03-08 15:30
Sthembiso Shandu. (Karabo Ngoepe, News24)

Sthembiso Shandu. (Karabo Ngoepe, News24)

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Pretoria - The Student Representative Council at Tshwane University of Technology's Soshanguve campus has called on the vice chancellor not to run the institution like a tuck shop.

"The vice chancellor must know that this is not his tuck shop. The university is a national asset," SRC vice president Sthembiso Shandu said.

"We have a responsibility, just like he does, to protect the image and integrity of the university.  He must not think it's his tuck shop."

Shandu was responding to the university's decision to shut down both campuses in Soshanguve following protests.

TUT spokesperson Willa de Ruyter said the reason for the closure of the campuses was to create an environment that was conducive to teaching and learning.

"In order to stabilise these campuses, a decision was taken today to close these campuses with immediate effect," De Ruyter said in a statement on Monday.

Activities at all other TUT campuses were continuing as normal.

"It must be noted that a number of the people who are causing these disruptions are in fact not registered TUT students. Because of the increasing violence, intimidation and assaults, the university has an obligation to ensure the safety of our students," De Ruyter said.

Shandu said he did not agree with the decision. He said closing the campuses would do more harm than good.

"The decision is going to damage the image of the university and make our qualifications untrusted by the companies that will hire us. It is wrong and must be reviewed," he said.

Shandu added that for the first time in to history of TUT, the protest had never turned violent and no property was damaged. He questioned how the institution arrived at the decision.

He said that they were ready to go back to class, but they wanted management to respond to their memorandum.

"We feel that this was a very stupid decision to ever be taken by doctors and professors of the university to say we must cancel the academic calendar because they failed to meet us in the boardroom and engage. We are not hooligans... we are ready to engage them," he said.

On Tuesday morning, students were packing up and leaving campuses following an ultimatum by management on Monday to vacate their residences.

The university would remain closed until April 5.

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