- Duduzane Zuma has pledged financial help for students at the University of KwaZulu-Natal
- This comes after protests repeatedly broke out over the financial exclusion of those who were unable to pay outstanding debts
- Former Minister Derek Hanekom has publicly questioned the source of the funds
Former tourism minister and ANC national executive committee member Derek Hanekom has voiced some concerns.
Duduzane Zuma has pledged an undisclosed amount of funds in a bid to help the struggling students at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
Hanekom has questioned where this money would be sourced from and wasn't shy about publicly raising this concern:
“Ordinarily to be welcomed. The question, in this case, is where that undisclosed amount of money comes from.”
Briefly.co.za reported that Duduzane has also called for an end to the violence that has taken place during recent protests:
“To my good brothers at UKZN, let’s stop burning our buildings. We’re smarter than that. I understand your frustrations, I understand your anger. Let’s channel our frustrations, let’s hone in on our anger and let’s make a difference. We will sit down, I will come to you and we will do what needs to be done."
The unrest taking place at multiple campuses has seen numerous buildings burnt down and a barrage of damage done.
One incident saw Professor Erwin Brüning being assaulted by a protester, with a R10 000 reward offered by a former student in exchange for finding the perpetrator.
The university has since issued a statement from vice-chancellor and principal Professor Nana Poku, revealing that the total damage done is estimated at R31 million.
"In addition to the estimated R31 million worth of damage to university property and the disruptions to our academic programmes, UKZN’s reputation and standing, both national and international, are also suffering. This will make it all the more difficult to restore, let alone advance the interests of our students. Vitriolic attacks against the university in the press and on social media seriously misrepresent the conditions under which the university operates and the very considerable financial support we offer our students."
Poku revealed that student debt totalled a whopping R1.7 billion at the end of December last year.
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