UKZN urges protesting students to stop destruction

2016-09-06 14:28

Durban – The University of KwaZulu-Natal urged students to stop engaging in acts of destruction saying it had obtained a High Court interdict against unlawful protests.

"UKZN has a High Court interdict in place protecting the university against unlawful protests, disruptive gatherings, demonstrations, mass action, intimidation or any violent act to persons or property at the entrance and premises of university campuses," spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said in a statement.

The UKZN Westville, Howard College and Pietermaritzburg campuses experienced violent student protests throughout Monday night. Lectures at all campuses have since been suspended.

On the Westville campus, a large auditorium was set alight around 23:30.

According to Seshoka, university risk management services and the metro fire department managed to extinguish the fire by 03:00.

"Protest action on the Howard College and Pietermaritzburg campuses saw small groups of students burning furniture and pelting stones at security officials late last night," he said.

Students arrested

Seshoka urged students to "follow established protocol and raise any issue of concern" with their respective student representatives.

Earlier on Tuesday, police confronted around 30 students who were chanting struggle songs.

They dispersed the crowd. Students also reported being tear gassed. A small fire in a bin had to be extinguished.

According to police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane, 16 students, aged between 17 and 20, were arrested for public violence and contravening a court order. Zwane said six vehicles had been burnt on campus.

Zwane said those arrested would appear at the Durban Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

On Tuesday last week, the Howard College coffee shop was set alight, while the Pietermaritzburg main exam hall went up in flames a day later.

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