Students bring UKZN to standstill

2012-08-22 15:57

Cape Town - A protest that brought the University of KwaZulu Natal's Pietermaritzburg and Durban campuses to a standstill was suspended on Wednesday.

Pictures of students burning tyres and reports of police firing teargas were rife on Twitter.

KZN police spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane said police used stun grenades to disperse the students.

Five people were arrested when about 130 students protested on campus, said Zwane.

"It’s quiet at the moment," he told News24.

Students of the University of KwaZulu-Natal at Howard College in Durban and at the Pietermaritzburg campus started protesting on Tuesday, with students demanding, among other things, safety at residences, adequate maintenance and living conditions, and better management of cafeteria services.

Student Representative Council spokesperson Isaac Luthuli said they decided to suspend the strike after the university management showed willingness to address their grievances.

Luthuli told News24 they were working with management, but that “anything can happen”.

"We have received reports that lectures have been disrupted and that police have arrested a number of individuals for participating in violent protest action," university spokesperson Nomonde Mbadi said in a statement.

Mbadi said a meeting had been scheduled with student representatives and management.

"Management sincerely regrets and does not condone the disruptions to lectures and the intimidation of staff and students," she said.

Police were keeping watch on the campus at Howard College.

In a report by SABC, Luthuli said they gave management an ultimatum of seven days before starting to strike again.  

  • chris.novak.9235 - 2012-08-22 16:02

    Our lekker future in the hands of these idiots who want want want, We had to pay for our studies and how we did that was to work, and if we did not have money for our studies, we could not study. Bunch of wannabees...

  • brett.bruce.121 - 2012-08-22 16:03

    And yet they blame the previous government for their lack of education...

      Kwezilomso - 2012-08-22 16:17

      this has nothing to do with the previous government and nobody said it did. post comments that r relevant to the topic at hand instead of using this platform as your "dear diary, i hate blacks page", you have the emotional intelligence of a three year old!......

      brett.bruce.121 - 2012-08-22 17:18

      @Kwezilomso Wow how big is that chip on your shoulder? Do you enjoy living in denial?

      flower.fourie - 2012-08-22 17:47

      I actually have to say well done to kwezilomso for not blaming it on the previous government, well done. This shows that not everyone thinks that it's all "aparthieds fault".

      tw2066 - 2012-08-22 19:24

      No, Kwezi is right, it has nothing to do with the previous government. In those days you could study and learn. It has everything to do with the current crappy government, they afford every kid rights to screw up others dreams and ambitions. Now, seeing as Kwezi opemed the door on race, I just want to ask - not implying anything - just asking, what do you believe the racial composition of the protesters where ..... Ok, time to change my Huggy and settle in with a bottle.....

      dbnsfynest - 2012-08-23 10:00

      @Brett who is this \they\ that you are referring to? And when did \they\, whoever \they\ are blame the previous government.\r\n@Kwezi they are other ways to get your views across without mentioning race. Although Brett may have implied he was speaking about black people he didn't actually say it so you have no justification for saying he hates blacks. He might very well love them, but there's no evidence to prove or disprove that.\r\n@TW since your so interested in the racial composition of the protestors Ill give you a first hand account. The majority of prostestors there were black, but the vast majority of students in the university residences are black. Since this is a protest stemming from student residences this composition is what you would expect, obviously! Now a little added information: the majority of students of some other racial groups do not need student residence as they either live at home and drive to campus or else have money to afford to live in communes.

  • shelley.vorster.9 - 2012-08-22 16:11

    Better Cafateria services???????? Heres an idea, use - dont use it - Pay your damn fees as this will help PAY for these things you so calmly D.E.M.A.N.D

  • kevin.pitzer - 2012-08-22 16:14

    When i was a kid we went to the cinema or played sport as a past time however it seems that the National past time has become to protest,intimidate,burn and wreak havoc....Another normal day in S.A !

      shelley.vorster.9 - 2012-08-22 16:20

      & dont forget that when the teachers actually try to help then students also go on the rampage and burn desks - NICE - Lekker in SA

      shelley.vorster.9 - 2012-08-22 16:26

      Oh & dont forget that when we were at school teachers & students just NEVER protested, we never demanded anything - WE WORKED out butts off to be where we are today & all these people want is FREEBIES. We should change the national anthem to Oh we want, Oh yes we want Oh we want or we will burn everyhing

      kevin.pitzer - 2012-08-22 16:39

      What beats me is a Uni is a centre for higher learning where you need have a little savey to be enrolled....Here we see future academics who seem not to have a capacity to behave in a manner as expected globally.

      dbnsfynest - 2012-08-23 09:37

      With all due respect sir, yours was a sheltered life if that was your biggest problem (what sport to play today). Now when my father was around the same age az most students, 20s, he had to deal with constant police raids and harrasment by authority figures although am quite sure you grew up in the same South Africa (although worlds apart apparently). I mean no disrespect in interupting your nostalgic moment here but I would rather grow up in these \havoc\ days than in the not-so-\good 'ol days\ of my father's youth.

  • Witty Dot - 2012-08-22 16:36

    our Government and the all stake holders should understand that things has change. Fuel , Food, transport and other thing are so expensive. including our Education. so i dn't see a need of paying university large amount of money while they dn't deliver. large money means better education , better conditions/environment. those students are on it's rights

  • sisie.indola - 2012-08-22 16:38

    Wonderful - another riot because of the "i wants" well you know what i also want.....a furnished house, a new car,an iphone, a galaxy tab, a laptop, free lights & water, decent medical, a R20grand salary, not to pay tax - but you what the reality is that only happens in dreams and i grew up a long time ago. So i actually have a suggestion to these students you choose University to study - so buckle up and do so because at the moment you are just being ridiculous and childish, obviously rioting is the new game in town. Ag shame - grow up!

  • Motho - 2012-08-22 16:56

    Yes, there are problems at residences but how does detsroying infrastsructure helps?

  • sagren.padayachie - 2012-08-22 16:59

    Students all over the world protest about important issues such as Human Rights, the environment etc, South African students only think about themselves.

      sagren.padayachie - 2012-08-22 17:03

      How about protesting about the lack of leadership regarding the Lonmin Miners.

  • SNG62 - 2012-08-22 17:32

    A couple of Caspers filled with sjambok-toting cops with a can of teargas or two should be let loose!

      stanton.clarke - 2012-08-22 19:36

      No, we cant do that, these kids are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way.

  • Phelamanga - 2012-08-22 17:34

    Why the violence? If they are attending a university there are more intelligent methods of having one's grievances addressed. If there is danger on the campus then the SRC must address the issue and if the cafeterias are not functioning properly, the SRC should address the matter. It seems as if it's the SRC, voted for by the students, who seem to be the ones not doing their jobs, or is it more important to allow the mob the vandalise and destroy property which does not belong to them. And the deafening silence from the Comrade Minister of Higher Education echoes through these halls of learning. What kind of nation are we building when students are barbarians and pure thuggery takes over from intelligence? This seems to be a turf war more than anything else, and who might be involved? The Champagne Communists and their cronies. One day, hopefully never, these comrades will laugh at how they brought a university to a standstill while they sip on their Johnny Walkers and eat sushi.

      hendrik.breed - 2012-08-22 21:12

      And the students will end up with no education, working at Lonmin mine, protesting against salary imbalances between the well learned ceo and theirs.

  • rob.tubbs.39 - 2012-08-22 18:29

    Keep it closed.

  • kyle.minnaar - 2012-08-22 20:08

    Unbelievable contradiction. Students, demanding the varsity to improve management by protesting. Perhaps they should learn how to manage their issues first. SRC should have never allowed this to happen... Also, what has this got to do with black or white???????? Im so over people bringing color into everything.

  • bmaestro - 2012-08-23 07:51

    parents are paying large sums of money towards their children's education but ukzn top notch officials seems to be taking things for granted.pull your socks shape up or ship warning to of my sister is studying there,she tells me the living conditions are deteriorating by the day.address all the students' grievances ASAP!

  • gaeleen - 2012-08-23 08:49

    Bring back the good old days of education - needed A+ to get into vasrity, studies had to be paid for, res had to be paid for. The few bursaries went to top notch NEEDY people and if you failed you were out the door - never to return. Campus life ....peaceful. Also there were techs for apprentices -- what happened ....where did it all go wrong and WHY????!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • allison.steedman - 2012-08-23 09:48

    whilst not condoning destructive and violent behaviour, these students do have some valid complaints - and they are not race related. No one on campus is talking race, they are simply asking for improvements to things like security - students are being raped and robbed - how would you like it if your daughter was attacked on campus? You would blame the government. Whites are protesting too by the way - the media of course choose to only focus on the blacks. Additionally to all of you commenting that protesting is normal for SA, do some research and you will find that it is normal in many other cities - drive through Paris on any given day of the week and you will see a minimum of 5 - 6 protests being carried out. When you are not given a forum to express your requirements (often just basic human rights) and no one is listening to you, then naturally protests are the way to go. So many people on this forum sit in their little ivory towers and comment without ever having to face the hardship and difficulties that these people face. At least they are trying to get an education - why is the government not helping more? Because their agenda is to keep education to a minimum so that they have more ignoramuses to vote for them.

      dbnsfynest - 2012-08-23 10:09

      hear, hear!

  • tracy.g.basson - 2012-08-23 13:16

    These are not strikers, these are now rioters!

  • CurtisWellie Chong Fo M - 2013-03-20 21:43

    I'm sure most of you who are commenting on this platform have no idea what the issue is or what the situation was. This is not about, 'wants' as some of you perceive it to be. These students paid for the accommodation, which the university promised to provide and yet failed to deliver. 500 students slept on the streets, due to the failure of the UKZN management in managing the varsity affairs. It should be noted that this management is comprised of all races, whites, indians, blacks and coloreds, so do not associate it to be a race issue.

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