TUT students’ violent protests over funding breach court order

2014-09-10 08:47

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Students behind protests at the Tshwane University of Technology were in breach of an interdict the university obtained earlier this year, the institution said.

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

TUT spokesperson Willa de Ruyter said that order was still in force.

Classes were suspended yesterday and today at the institution’s Pretoria and Ga-Rankuwa campuses due to protests.

“The strike was violent and illegal and student leadership did not follow the agreed protocol required before embarking on protest action,” said De Ruyter.

She said only a small number of people were behind the disruptions, which affected nearly 50 000 students.

The boycotting of lectures was related to lack of funds in the National Student Financial Aid Scheme.

“The university can only disburse the funds allocated by the department of higher education and training,” said De Ruyter.

The department had given the institution R644 million this year. The money was used to help 4 359 first-year students and 13 550 returning students.

De Ruyter apologised to those students negatively affected by the protests.

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