Wits EFF students to hear fate on Thursday

2015-08-26 13:56
(Alexander Joe, AFP)

(Alexander Joe, AFP) ((Alexander Joe, AFP))

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Johannesburg – The High Court in Johannesburg will rule on Thursday on an application by six suspended EFF-aligned students to take part in Wits University’s SRC elections.

Judge Motsamai Makume said on Wednesday he would then either hand down an order or make a judgment, and give reasons later.

The students wanted their suspensions lifted until their disciplinary inquiry had been finalised, said Tembeka Ngcukaitobi, for the Economic Freedom Fighters, its Student Command, and the six students.

They also wanted to be allowed to stand as candidates in the 4-day SRC elections, which would run on Wednesday and Thursday, and September 1 and 2.

During an SRC election debate last Tuesday, the six were allegedly involved in “shoving, punching and strangling”, Jeremy Gauntlett, for Wits University, told the court. He handed up a CD containing a YouTube video of the incident to Makume.

Ngcukaitobi said the suspension order was not rational because it did not identify the alleged perpetrators and it was disproportionate punishment. He denied that the party was engaged in violence, and said the perpetrators were members of the ANC Youth League and a liberal student organisation called Project W.

EFF member and advocate Dali Mpofu, who was sitting in the public gallery, whispered an instruction to Ngcukaitobi. He then told the judge they would settle for an order allowing the students to contest the elections.

Gauntlett replied that each student who was allegedly involved was sent a letter notifying them of disciplinary proceedings. He dismissed the “Solomonic” solution of allowing the students to contest the elections as impractical.

Makume mentioned that the Inkatha Freedom Party had been allowed to contest the 1994 elections at the 11th hour.

“This can’t work My Lord, the eggs are scrambled,” Gauntlett said.

Ballot papers would have to be reprinted and those votes already cast would have to be discarded, he said.

Read more on:    wits  |  eff  |  johannesburg  |  education

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