MPs check phones, make jokes while students do battle - Sasco

2015-10-27 20:00
Keke Maki (Jenni Evans, News24)

Keke Maki (Jenni Evans, News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Tuesday's debate in Parliament on university fees was nothing more than political point scoring, a bitterly disappointed SA Students Congress (Sasco) branch chair has said.

"This is an urgent debate to come up with solutions for students, but not a single speaker has come up with a solution to go forward," said a visibly upset Keke Maki from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

"It's very disappointing," said Maki outside the public gallery on Tuesday during the debate on university fees opened by Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande.

It was a week after the boom of stun grenades could be heard during the medium-term budget sitting as students tried to storm Parliament to be heard on their demand that #feesmustfall.

Maki said he was appalled by the decorum of the MPs as they taunted and made fun of one another while students tried to resolve a genuine crisis.

''They just came with pieces of paper, with speeches to score points against one another.''

He had expected more from the MPs, who were seen checking their phones and chatting among themselves during the debate while ushers served them water from trays.

"It shows how political power is useless in our country," said Maki.

Sasco was trying to handle students who were agitated by the situation at universities, he said.

"But this isn't a debate. They just came with speeches to look good."

Student organisations should approach political parties and tell them that students needed a clear plan, he said.

"We finally got Parliament's attention, but it is not enough."

On Friday last week, after a week of confrontations between police and students, President Jacob Zuma announced that university fees would not be increased next year.

Some students have decided to keep on protesting, aiming to address other issues, such as putting an end to outsourcing and demanding free education for all.

Read more on:    cput  |  sasco  |  blade nzimande  |  university fees

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.