UCT protesters demand return of 5 students barred from campus

2016-05-13 17:29
A creative protest symbolizing body bags as protesters call on UCT to “bring back our cadres”. Photo: Masixole Feni

A creative protest symbolizing body bags as protesters call on UCT to “bring back our cadres”. Photo: Masixole Feni

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Cape Town - An interdict against a number of University of Cape Town students was made an order of court on Wednesday. As a result, five students find themselves effectively expelled, GroundUp reports.

The five (of the original 16 named respondents) are not allowed on campus for an indefinite period of time, except with the express written consent of the vice-chancellor. They are: Alex Hotz, Masixole Mlandu, Chumani Maxwele, Slovo Magida and Zola Shokane. They will also have to pay UCT's costs, including that of two counsel.

On Thursday morning, a handful of protesters assembled on UCT's Jameson Plaza calling on UCT to "bring back our cadres". A large cloth was laid out on the steps, proclaiming: "Death of Dreams". By noon the protest had grown to dozens of people.

"Body bags" were also laid out on the ground, representing the students who have been prevented from entering campus.  

The interdict arises after the Shackville protests on February 16 over accommodation at UCT, where protesters erected a shack on the campus and called for students, especially black students, to be housed in university accommodation. The protest escalated.

In the order, Judge Rosheni Allie wrote: "Concerning the disruptive and destructive form that the protests took, it cannot be said that the apprehension of it recurring is not reasonable given the great lengths to which some protesters went, to perpetrate the destruction. The unrepentant stance adopted by the respondents, led the applicant to believe that the harm could recur if an interdict is not granted prohibiting the misconduct complained of."

Allie wrote that the university had no "adequate alternative remedy" to prevent further damage to property. Disciplinary action as well as claiming damages were slower processes.

Supporters of the expelled students protest on UCT plaza. Photo supplied by Rhodes Must Fall via Twitter.

Read more on:    uct  |  cape town  |  university protests

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