We won't hesitate to suspend more students, staff - UJ vice chancellor

2015-11-05 21:15
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PICS: Students injured at UJ campus protest

Students protesting against university fees at the University of Johannesburg have reportedly been assaulted by outsourced security workers on campus. View pics of the protest here.

Johannesburg – The University of Johannesburg (UJ) said they would not hesitate to suspend students and staff after protest action turned violent on Thursday morning.

- Read more: They pepper sprayed me - UJ cleaner

Speaking at a media briefing, Vice Chancellor Ihron Rensburg said they would beef up security on Friday as students started to write their final exams. He said they had identified six key points on all four campuses that would require adequate security.

He said they needed to "create the conditions for exams to continue".

This came after students clashed with security earlier in the day. Some eight students and workers were believed to have been injured as a result. Men in black suits, hired by the university as extra security, were also seen pepper spraying students.

Later, one worker told News24 that stun grenades were also used.

- Read more: Security guards assault UJ students at protest

Rensburg said they had already suspended four students, including SRC president Khutso Rammutla, after a fire was apparently started by workers in the library on Wednesday night. He said some 5 000 students were in the library at the time.

"Six, seven times we had to evacuate the library... So when a student leader makes a threat or incites violence as they have done... then we have to act and we have acted," he said, adding that more suspensions would follow.

He went on to say that disciplinary proceedings against both the staff and students had been initiated.

Protests flared up on Thursday as students came out in support of campus workers who demanded an end to outsourcing.

Rensburg said at the briefing that he would aim to find a solution to outsourcing by December.

SRC chairperson at the Soweto campus, Siyabonga Ntlabathi, said earlier: "We are here to ensure that workers voice their views in a manner that is not wasting anyone's energy and is not going to provoke the police. We are here to support them. If they want to sleep here, we will sleep here with them..."

Meanwhile UJ student and EFF member Abubakr Amad said he would be accompanying five protesters to a police station soon to lay charges of assault against security staff.

Read more on:    uj  |  johannesburg  |  university fees

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