Wits suspends lectures amid protests
This follows a protest after the university proposed an increase of 10.5% in tuition fees for 2016.
JOHANNESBURG - Wits University has announced it's suspended all lectures and academic activity today to ensure the safety of all on campus.
This follows a protest sit-in by students this morning after the university proposed an increase of 10.5 percent in tuition fees for 2016.
The university says its fee increases are on par with other South African institutions, and it has been consulting with student leaders about the hike for several months.
- Ndlovukati (@Zoe_Ngwenyurr) October 14, 2015
The university says the demonstration was mostly peaceful aside from a single scuffle.
The university's Shirona Patel said, "Everything is calm at the moment. We did have one altercation, and those students have been removed from campus. However, we really believe that in the interest of the safety and security of all and until everything has calmed down and stabilised a bit, we are suspending all academic activities for today only."
Meanwhile, the university says while it respects the right to protest, it won't tolerate the violation of the right to education.
Wits Vice Chancellor Adam Habib says he's disappointed in the manner in which student leaders addressed their grievances.
"Essentially what we've had is 200 students violate the rights of 32,500 students on the campus, and obviously this matter will have to be addressed, both with the student leadership and those who violated the student code of conduct."
A student march also took place this afternoon.
- EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) October 14, 2015
REACTION ON SOCIAL MEDIA:
"Stay in your financial lane. Go to FET College, and let the rich go to Wits." Awunyi perhaps? Sengathi your thinking is flawed! #WitsFees
- Thobi (@thobile_dlalisa) October 14, 2015
- Shawn G. Greyling (@inshawnwetrust) October 14, 2015
University is free in other countries. There's an increase in #WitsFees because of the governments incompetency to provide. Don't blame wits
- Loy (@Loy11) October 14, 2015
The fact that the fee increase isn't a burden to you shouldn't prevent you from recognising its impact on others. #WitsFees
- Patricia (@patriciaaruo) October 14, 2015
- Empress Malebo ♡ (@malebosays) October 14, 2015