UFS students face disciplinary action for spraying security guard with liquid

2016-08-24 16:38

Bloemfontein – Three students at the University of Free State are facing disciplinary action after they allegedly sprayed liquid in the face of a security guard at one of the institution's gates, the university said on Wednesday.

According to UFS spokesperson Lacea Loader, university management received a complaint on August 16.

"The reason appears to be that three students were sent back to their residence to collect their student cards in order to exit the campus – as required – and this might have caused the reaction," she said.

In video footage, it is clear that a student on the passenger side of the vehicle was responsible for the spraying incident, she said.

Statements have been taken from the three students in the car, as well as from the affected security guard.

However, one of the students claims that the liquid was water from his gym bottle, and not urine.  

'White barbarians and bigots'

Loader said charge sheets were prepared and delivered, and the disciplinary hearing had been scheduled on an urgent basis for September 1.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Free State Cosatu described the attack as racist and labelled the students "white barbarians and bigots".  

It claimed that the black female security guard was splashed in the face with urine.  

"We share the pain, humiliation and embarrassment which the poor worker may have felt when this incident took place. We condemn these white barbarians and bigots," it said.  

"This is both a racist and a patriarchal attack on this worker and we call on all white people and males in the province to reject this and make it clear that it was not done in their name." 

In a separate incident, a lecturer at the university will face disciplinary action after an inclusion of answers in an Afrikaans test paper he prepared.

External moderation

Loader said a test paper was distributed in a class where the answer to one of questions was included in the Afrikaans version, while it was excluded in the English version.

"The matter was investigated and it was decided that the written test will be set aside and a new test, covering the same scope, will be compiled for all students," Loader said.

Loader said the new test would be subjected to external moderation, and that external moderation of tests in the particular department would take place until the end of the year.

The lecturer, however, claimed that it was an honest mistake and not intentional. 

Loader said in the process of revising the papers, the lecturer made a mistake and did not remove the guidelines for both the English and Afrikaans versions.

The university management has decided on disciplinary action, given the seriousness of the matter. 

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