‘No punishment planned’ for protesting Wits students

Students & some staff protested against a 10.5 percent hike in fees for 2016, which has since been suspended.

A Wits University student sits on the ground during a third day of protests on campus over proposed tuition fee increases on 16 October 2015. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Wits University management says it will not be seeking disciplinary action against students or staff members who participated in this week's protest at the institution.

Lectures have also been suspended until Tuesday after students staged a sit-in and blocked university entrances.

They were protesting against a proposed 10.5 percent tuition increase for next year, which has now been suspended.

New negotiations for the 2016 academic year's fees will begin on Sunday, and council is expected to address students on the outcome on Monday.

Wits University has promised students that it will not revert to its initial decision of a 10.5 percent hike if the new negotiations break down.

The institution's Shirona Patel says no punishment is planned for anyone who participated in this week's demonstrations.

"No disciplinary action will be taken against the students or workers who participated in the protests and the council will take forward the position of the students for a no fee increase."

Exams and practicals have been cancelled, and the institution will remain closed until Monday.

WATCH: Most classes were cancelled as students at the University of the Witwatersrand protested for a third consecutive day over proposed tuition fee increases for 2016.