'Rogues' are in government, not universities - UWC parent

2015-11-12 18:20
Parents of UWC students. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Parents of UWC students. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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Cape Town - “Rogue elements” were not at university campuses, but in government, a parent of a university student said on Thursday.

“As parents we want an independent inquiry about who started the violence on the campuses,” said Marcus Solomon, whose son was studying at the University of the Western Cape (UWC).

“We hear so much about third force and rogue elements. I can tell you where they are sitting and where they are. They are not in universities. They are in government.”

He was addressing reporters following the appearance of 16 UWC students in the Bellville Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.

They were arrested on Wednesday after clashes with police on campus. Three students were hospitalised for injuries to the hand, head and face.

Four security guards were also injured.

Protesters had started fires, broken windows and set alight furniture.

Journalists were told on Thursday the protests followed an e-mail by the UWC council chairperson Mthunzi Mdwaba, who they say called them names and ignored their demands.

One student said they were only violent, because officers and guards had shot at them.

Solomon said the protests made him "very emotional".

“I have been sitting in my place of work and I have been worrying about my son.”

He wanted to know why the police and “the worst elements of the security forces” were on campus.

“Over the years I have come to understand I am a parent of all the children in this country. When the rectors of the institutions call the police, who do they represent? Are they fathers and mothers of our children?” he asked.

The packed room of students answered with “no!”

Echoing the concerns of other parents and students, he challenged the media not to come out with “distorted reports”.

Read more on:    uwc  |  cape town  |  education  |  university fees  |  protests

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