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UCT defends decision to rope in cops

UCT has faced criticism from organisations like the Black Academic Caucus after officers fired rubber bullets.

University of Cape Town students protesting on campus as they push for no fee hike at the university on 21 October 2015. Picture: Natalie Malgas/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The University of Cape Town (UCT) has defended its call for police intervention to break up student protests this week.

UCT #FeesMustFall protest now on main road, headed back to University. Traffic services are on scene. AM pic.twitter.com/1XST4P3gHU

Earlier this week, dozens of protesters were arrested during anti-fee protests.

Acting Vice Chancellor Professor Francis Petersen says while the university supports the students' right to protest, they have to ensure the safety of those who are not protesting.

#FeesMustFall UCT service staff protesting at lower campus. NM pic.twitter.com/2LFxKwlmHf

UCT has faced harsh criticism from organisations like the Black Academic Caucus after officers fired rubber bullets and used teargas against defiant students who occupied the Bremner Building.

LISTEN: UCT vice chancellor responds to #FeesMustFall campaign.

Students have vowed to intensify protests until management heeds their demands.

The South African Students Congress (Sasco) says several universities across the country and as well as agricultural colleges will take part in the national shut down.

UNIVERSITIES AFFECTED:

• University of Free State

• University of Limpopo

• University of Fort Hare

• Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University

• University of the Witwatersrand

• University of Cape Town

• Eastcape Midlands College (Grahamstown)

• The University currently known as Rhodes

• Central University of Technology

• Cape Peninsula University of Technology

• University of Western Cape

• All 11 Agricultural Colleges in South Africa

• Walter Sisulu University (Buffalo City Campus and Umtata Campus)

• Tshwane University of Technology

• University of Pretoria

• North West University (Potchefstroom campus)

• University of Stellenbosch

The protests have also been endorsed with messages of solidarity from students in the United Kingdom and in the SADC region.

CPUT SHUTS DOWN BOTH CAMPUSES

The Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) has shut down both its campuses in Cape Town amid ongoing fee demonstrations.

It's joined a growing list of tertiary institutions which have been forced to cancel classes this week.

CPUT's Lauren Kansley said, "Classes at CPUT are suspended until further notice and staff have been given permission to stay away. We've given students to participate in the nationwide fee protest. We continue to monitor the situation."

FORT HARE STUDENTS CHASE AWAY SECURITY GUARDS

Demonstrating university of fort hare students have chased away security guards on campus as they try to shut down the campus.

They plan on marching to the administration building to demand to meet with management.

#FeesMustFall UFH protesting students have chased security guards away and have occupied the entrance. MK pic.twitter.com/QSe7L8qlPv

Dozens of students have blocked the main entrance to the university of Fort Hare.

WATCH: Fort Hare students remain resilient, demand 0% increase.

They have chased security guards away.

The SRC's Sithenkosi Lungisa said, "We are shutting down the campus and we want students to manage and control the cover so we don't want anyone from the university personal hence we have chased them away."

Lecturers have also been advised by management to leave the premises.

Protesting University of the Free State students say they won't accept anything less than management agreeing not to hike tuition and residence fees next year.

Entry to the university's campus in Bloemfontein has been closed off as students join the #FeesMustFall campaign that has brought operations at several tertiary institutions to a halt this week.

A small group of students are gathered at the main entrance in high spirits, singing together as police officers and security guards talk to each other.

Some of the SRC say education should be free and even a six percent fee hike is too high.

They say they have put their political differences aside to work together.