Protesters force students from Tuks law library

2015-10-26 18:08


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Pretoria - Some students at the University of Pretoria have expressed anger and disappointment at not being able to study following disruptions by protesting students.

A BCom LLB student, who asked not to be named, has told News24 of a scary encounter with the protesting students.

"I was peacefully sitting in the... law library, preparing with a lot of other students for exams after a long and difficult academic year when I saw a group of... students stopping a bus that was traveling from the Hatfield campus to LC De Villiers and telling students to get off.

"After that we heard them screaming just outside the library. They were trying to get in... some of the law students starting screaming at them to go away so that we can study for exams and tests that we still have to write this week," she said.

She said a fellow law student dressed in EFF clothing swiped his student card for the protesters, allowing them into the building. This is strictly against the rules.

"They started singing and ringing bells and then they came up to the floor where we were looking on. They started screaming at us telling us to pack up and stop studying," she said.

The students were escorted out of the building by security staff through a group of protesting students.

"I feel like the EFF and Sasco [SA Students Congress] are creating a division between students who want to study and students who want to disrupt. We want to study to get a better future, but they are keeping us from building our futures by disrupting our studies.

"This wasn't the first time I felt scared on campus. The other time was just after the SRC elections when members of the EFF and Sasco protested against the results which showed that [the DA Students Organisation] got the majority of votes.

"I am very upset about this and it makes me worried about my future in South Africa. Am I ever going to finish my degree or are the EFF and SASCO going to take that from me too?"

The university's spokesperson, Anna-Retha Bouwer, could not confirm "a specific incident", but said classes were suspended after disruptions. 

"The vice chancellor has been in negotiations with student leaders all day long," she said. 

The EFF at the university could not be immediately reached for comment. 

Another law student said the situation was getting out of control.

“Things are really bad here. They are throwing people out of the library and now we are being kicked off campus. I don't know what's going on. I just want an education. Can't I just go to campus? This is really bad," she said. 

Read more on:    university of pretoria  |  sasco  |  eff  |  pretoria  |  university fees

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