UCT students stand firm on their demands

About 150 students have been camping at the Bremner Building at UCT since Friday evening.

Using the slogan "Rhodes Must Fall" some students are demanding the Cecil John Rohodes statue must be taken down on the University of Cape Town's campus, as it represents institutional racism. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - University of Cape Town (UCT) students calling for the removal of the statue of Cecil John Rhodes, say they will camp in the university's administration building indefinitely, until there is transformation at the university.

Students are demanding the university fast track transformation and remove the Rhodes statue which they see as a sign of past oppression.

About 150 students have been camping at the Bremner Building since Friday evening.

The campaign's spokesperson Kealeboga Ramaru says students have discussed the possibility of extending their stay.

"Bremner is where the university's management operates from, it's where the offices of the vice-chancellor are. We are occupying the building because the people who need to be engaging us are there and they are not talking to us."

The university has said it will refer student's grievances to the institution's council which meets next month.

Meanwhile, UCT vice-chancellor Max Price said, "We think the thousands of students who are not part of this lobby must be brought along and be given the opportunity to hear the argument."

He added that lectures will be interrupted for one day next week.

"We will stream in every lecture theatre which presents the different arguments to get students talking about this and maybe they might change their views when they came to the university."

Furthermore, several organisations, including the Ses'khona Peoples Rights Movement and the African National Congress (ANC), put their weight behind UCT students who are calling for transformation and the removal of the statue of Rhodes.