Reopen varisities, PE business chamber tells students

2016-10-06 21:01
Students at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University campus in Port Elizabeth during the  #OpenNMMU protest. (Derick Spies, News24)

Students at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University campus in Port Elizabeth during the #OpenNMMU protest. (Derick Spies, News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Port Elizabeth – More than 1 000 NMMU students marched to the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber on Thursday to ask businesses to help poor students.

Businesses had a responsibility to educate citizens and help redress the country’s wealth imbalances, student leader Nathi Dwayi told the crowd outside the chamber’s office in Norvic Drive.

“We believe it is unjust if we allow the system to continue excluding students in higher institutions of learning on the basis that the person does not have capacity to pay,” he said.

Public order police escorted students along their 7km walk, which began at the Vuyisile Mini square in front of the City Hall. The march was peaceful and students sang and danced as they made their way through the streets.

Chamber CEO, Kevin Hustler, acknowledged the Fees Must Fall student movement’s right to protest.

“We agree that there are fundamental challenges in the tertiary education system in South Africa, which needs to be considered seriously and addressed by the institutions as well as government,” he told the crowd.

He said shutting down universities was not helping the students’ cause. Not being able to complete the 2016 academic year would negatively affect a generation of students.

“The closing of tertiary educational institutions will also have vast financial implications, not only on the students, their families and the institutions, but also on the broader economy of the country,” he said.

Hustler urged students involved in protests for free tertiary education to commit to the reopening of the university so academic work could continue.

“Although the NMMU students have shown discipline in their march, we implore them to continue to distance themselves from intimidation, violence and destruction of infrastructure as this does not do their cause any justice, undermines their credibility and is doing more harm to our institutions and the community at large.”

Hustler said Nelson Mandela Bay businesses had contributed significantly to local academic institutions, particularly with research and development partnerships, and through bursaries and internships.


Read more on:    nmmu  |  university protests  |  university fees

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.