Charges dropped against UWC #FeesMustFall activist

Charges against a University of the Western Cape (UWC) #FeesMustFall were withdrawn in the Bellville Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

The State dropped the charges of public violence and malicious damage to property against Siyasanga Ndwayi in favour of a diversion order, his lawyer Lufuno Musetsho said.

"I wrote a letter to the Director of Public Prosecutions for a diversion order. They responded, and the charges were dropped," he said.

"What this means is that he will complete 50 hours of community service within six months. If he does not complete the community service, he will be recharged."

Diversion is a form of restorative justice, which has the goal of reintegrating an offender into a law-abiding community and preventing reoffending.

It involves offenders taking responsibility for a crime and making amends with the community.

Ndwayi, who is completing his honours degree at UWC, said he was relieved by the outcome.

"Remember, this has been going on for three years now. It has been emotionally and psychologically draining," he said.

"Because I was in and out of court, I was missing deadlines and classes. Even today, I missed a presentation because I was in court."

He explained that his position as a Student Representative Council (SRC) member played a role in his arrest.

"As a member of the SRC, it was my job to mediate discussions between students and management," he said.

"Instead of listening to the students, management deployed private security. I was the only one arrested during a confrontation between students and security. After the police fired rubber bullets and teargas, I was too dizzy to escape."

The student only had encouraging words for other activists who are still facing charges relating to their protest for free higher education.

"I would just like to remind them that we fought for a genuine and just cause. I wish them strength and courage," he said.

"Don't lose focus on the struggle. It isn't over yet."

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
When assisting your child with remote learning this year, did you:
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Follow the school's comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) curriculum?
13% - 267 votes
Adjust the CSE curriculum to suit the family's morals?
24% - 477 votes
Ignore the schools CSE programme and do your own teaching?
63% - 1282 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
15.25
(+1.16)
ZAR/GBP
20.47
(+0.53)
ZAR/EUR
18.38
(+0.23)
ZAR/AUD
11.23
(+1.07)
ZAR/JPY
0.15
(+1.21)
Gold
1815.58
(+2.09)
Silver
24.02
(+6.12)
Platinum
997.00
(+3.31)
Brent Crude
47.66
(-0.77)
Palladium
2408.00
(+2.53)
All Share
57509.72
(+0.73)
Top 40
52764.09
(+0.74)
Financial 15
11238.33
(+0.71)
Industrial 25
79067.55
(+0.13)
Resource 10
53562.00
(+1.63)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo