Varsity denies admission to blind students

2013-11-01 21:54
(Picture: AFP)

(Picture: AFP)

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Port Elizabeth - Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) has been accused of discrimination, after it denied three students admission because they are blind.

NMMU in Port Elizabeth turned down the trio's applications saying it did not have "adequate facilities to cater for them".

"At this stage, NMMU does not provide access to students who are completely blind because the institution does not have the necessary resources to assist them," spokesperson Roslyn Baartjies told AFP late on Thursday.

Human rights activists have taken the matter up with the National Council for the Blind, which will visit the university next week for talks on the issue.

Meanwhile, the students turned away by the school expressed dismay at the decision.

"My long-held dream of attending NMMU has been shattered," said Avukile Jeke, 21. "My dream was to study in the Eastern Cape and work here so I can develop my province."

"What hurts most is that I was not turned away because I didn't make the grade, but because of something I did not choose for myself."

Jeke, together with Lubabalo Sapepa, 21, and Yanelisa Ginida, 19, applied for a spot at the university in July.

When they went a month later to write an aptitude test, they were told it was not possible.

Their classmate, Ncebakazi Siziba, 22, who is partially blind, was admitted.

"I am pained that my friends and classmates cannot be accepted. We were together in the whole application process," Siziba said.

Read more on:    port elizabeth  |  education

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