Zuma should address nation over tertiary fees matter - SACC

The South African Council of Churches says the matter is not only an issue of law and order.

FILE: Academics call for government’s blueprint for free education on 7 October 2016 at Wits University. Picture: Kgothatso Mogale/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Council of Churches has called on President Jacob Zuma to treat the # FeesMustFall protest as an urgent matter and not just an issue of law and order and security force engagement.

General Secretary Bishop Malusi Mpumlwana says: "It should not be treated as law and order matter only, which is what it seems to be. It's public policy issue. It needs governmental engagement, not only security force engagement."

Mpumlwana says Zuma must consider addressing the nation on the matter.

"Even if he will go on public television just to say to the nation you recognise that this is a very serious matter now because we only have one week, it's one week, if we don't resolve this within this week, we've lost the year."

Meanwhile, classes at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) and University of the Western Cape (UWC) remain suspended.

It is unclear when operations will resume after classes were suspended due to student protests.

Both institutions are meant to start with final exams in less than a month's time.

Classes at UWC were meant to resume today but management announced a further delay, saying a postponement is the best option instead of having further disruptions, as talks are yet to be finalised.

At CPUT, classes remain suspended until further notice. The institution's vice-chancellor Prins Nevhutalu says the executive is committed to ensuring the academic year continues.

It's understood a meeting between management and students has been planned for today.

Meanwhile, the University of Cape Town will also remain closed today. The university's Elijah Moholola explains: "The decision allows for more time for engagement with key stakeholders including the SRC, particularly SRC members who are leading the protests at present."