Cabinet concerned by violent student protests

Jeff Radebe says protests put further strain on limited resources to provide education for the poor.

Minister in the Presidency, Jeff Radebe. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - Cabinet says it is "very concerned" at the resurgence of violent protests on some of the country's campuses, saying they are criminal acts that must be dealt with firmly.

Recently, the University of KwaZulu-Natal's(UKZN) law library was damaged by a fire which saw the destruction of a number of books - including some that cannot be replaced.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe says such acts put further strain on already limited resources to provide education for the poor.

"The resources destroyed, including a library, as witnessed at the UKZN, books and infrastructure is totally unacceptable and destroys the knowledge capital accumulated over time."

He's urged the student leadership to protect the resources of learning intuitions.

"Cabinet calls on student leadership to join the call for the protection of valuable university infrastructure and resources which is part of the common national heritage of all South Africans."

Radebe says the government has heard the issues around tertiary education fees raised by students and is working on finding a solution. The Commission of Inquiry into Higher Education and Training funding is expected to complete its work by June next year.