Bus burnt, classes suspended as Tshwane students protest

2014-09-09 11:39

Classes were suspended at the Tshwane University of Technology today following a student protest over financial aid.

“Groups of students started protesting this morning at the university’s main campus. Very early in the morning a bus was set alight,” spokesperson Willa de Ruyter said.

“All academic activities have been suspended for the day.”

She could not provide details about the bus.

De Ruyter said the protest was related to National Student Financial Aid Scheme payments. She could not immediately confirm claims that first-year students’ funding applications had been rejected.

“I will have to get more information because there has been a change in the administration of financial aid scheme funding.”

She said universities and colleges used to administer the funds themselves but the financial aid scheme centralised the funding so it came directly from the scheme.

De Ruyter said students would be updated later.

The university’s students protested about the financial aid scheme in May and in January.

In January the university suspended classes and evicted students from the institution’s residences. It also obtained a court order to stop protests at its campuses.

The Socialist Youth Movement and the student representative council later won an interdict at the North Gauteng High Court against the unlawful eviction of students. The university was ordered to pay costs.

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