Wits Retaliates to Fees Protest by Serving “Disruptors” With Suspension Letters, Nehawu Workers Join Protest

Wits Retaliates to Fees Protest by Serving “Disruptors” With Suspension Letters, Nehawu Workers Join Protest

  • The Wits University fees protest has entered its third day with scores of students flanking the institution's Great Hall
  • Wits University has hit back at protesting students by suspending "disruptors" for breaking the university's rules
  • Students have intensified their protest efforts with the workers' union, Nehawu, joining their ranks

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JOHANNESBURG - The University of Witwatersrand has retaliated to ongoing fees protest by suspending students they have labelled disruptors.

The Wits fees protest has entered its third day
The fees protest at Wits University has entered its third day. Image: @Thabo_Tshaba
Source: Twitter

The institution released a statement on Thursday evening, 2 March claiming multiple suspension orders to students who "transgressed the university's rules".

The protesting students are calling for the scrapping of financial exclusion, the end of residence alliance caps from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) and the lack of accommodation to be addressed, TimesLIVE reported.

Workers' union Nehawu vows to join Wits fees protest

The suspensions haven't dampened the students' resolve, who have promised to intensify their protests. Workers from the National Education, Health and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) have bolstered the protestors' numbers.

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Journalist Silindelo Masikane, who is on the ground at Wits, posted a video of Nehawu's promise to protesting students.

The workers union said that it was in the process of applying for a certificate to join the protest. Nehawu branch treasurer Bheki Mkhize vowed to strike in solidarity with the students once it's legally allowed to do you.

Mkhize declared:

"We are with you!"

South Africans in 2 camps over Wits fees protest

While some people sympathise with the protesting students' plight, others believe their behaviour is criminal.

Below are some comments:

@bongzmessi said:

"A focused youth means a brighter future. A united youth means a strong and sustainable future‼️"

@bless_King23

"This is such a sad thing to watch, I'll never agree with destroying property."

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@1st_putsans praised:

"One thing about black South Africans is we will fight, we have a fighting spirit, and we don't go into corners."

@craigbestbier

"Police/protection services should arrest all of these clowns and charge them with malicious damage to property. Bunch of hooligans that throw stones."

@KatlegoMoAfrika

"Dear @WitsUniversity, please don't despise a black child, they are the future of Africa and they are worthy."

@MalapJdk

"Please leadership, the students' protest at #witsprotest has escalated, and the behaviour is outside the law. Please intervene, we can voice our grievance within the law... please..."

Wits SRC vows to continue campus shutdown until demands are met, protest spills into streets of Braamfontein

In a related story, Briefly News reported that the Wits Student Representative Council (SRC) has vowed to go forward with shutting down the university's campus until its demands are met.

On Wednesday, 1 March, scores of the university's students disrupted lectures and took to the streets of Braamfontein, Johannesburg, in a protest demonstration.

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The students are demanding an end to financial exclusion, a scrapping of the cap on residence allowances from NSFAS and a lack of accommodation, TimesLIVE reported.

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Source: Briefly News

Authors:
Lerato Mutsila avatar

Lerato Mutsila (Current affairs editor) Lerato Mutsila is a journalist with 3 years of experience. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Pearson Institute of Higher Education in 2020, majoring in broadcast journalism, political science and communication. Lerato joined the Briefly News current affairs desk in August 2022. Mutsila is also a fellow of the 2021/2022 Young African Journalists Acceleration programme, which trained African journalists in climate journalism. You can contact Lerato at lerato.mutsila@breifly.co.za

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