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VUT closed due to violent student protests

The Vaal University of Technology has closed following a week of violent protests over financial aid.

Vaal University of Technology student gathering at the main gate of the campus during protest on 9 September 2014. Picture: IamCollenThwala ‏via Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - The Vaal University of Technology (VUT) has closed its doors following a week of violent protests over financial aid and planned graduations.

The main entrance of the university was blocked and students and lecturers were unable to attend classes from last week.

The Student Representative Council (SRC) has called for the National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) to receive more money and for Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande to address their demands.

The university's spokesman Mike Khuboni says the protests have continued despite a commitment being made last week to address the NSFAS shortfall.

"We agreed that the university will provide 50 percent of the NSFAS shortfall and then students were committed that they will not disrupt the normal functioning of the university but on Monday students interrupted the university operation."

Meanwhile, the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) says it's still unclear when classes will resume on two of its campuses, which were also hit by violent protests over financial aid.

Lectures were called off on Tuesday at the Pretoria and Ga-Rankuwa campuses when students torched one of their buses.

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