Fireworks, stinkbombs disrupt Wits tests

2016-10-21 22:20

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Johannesburg - Several lectures and two tests were disrupted at Wits University on Friday when fireworks and stink bombs were set off in lecture rooms.

Protesting Fees Must Fall students entered classrooms pretending to sit for a lecture and/or test before setting off firecrackers and stink bombs, Wits spokesperson Shirona Patel said.

"They also blew whistles extremely loudly so that lectures and tests could not continue and students panicked and evacuated the rooms. In some cases, students continued with lectures outside the classrooms," Patel said.

In one instance a test in the New Commerce Building, where 500 law students were writing, was disrupted.

"Students tried to disrupt lectures at the Faculty of Health Sciences in Parktown this morning, but were moved out of the building by private security and the police," Patel said.

Four students were arrested on Friday for allegedly contravening a court order. Patel said students who had been identified as having violated the university’s rules would be suspended.

"The behaviour of the protesting students today is unacceptable and is a clear violation of the rights of those who chose to attend classes. The university is reviewing camera footage of today’s incidents and will act against those who are responsible," Patel said.

The Wits executive team had decided to relax restrictions on the movement of residence students, meaning that this weekend, students would be required to remain within their residences or areas of study between midnight and 05:00.

"Should they wish to leave a learning venue during this period, they will be escorted back to their residences by Campus Control, who will be stationed outside these centres. Several learning centres have been opened, including laboratories on several campuses, and 24-hour reading rooms," Patel said.


Read more on:    wits university  |  johannesburg

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