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TUT shuts down following protests on two campuses

Students on the Pretoria West and Garankuwa campuses barricaded the entrances with burning tyres.

Police arrest protesting students at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology Bellville Campus. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Tshwane University of Technology has shut down this morning following protests on two of its campuses.

Students on the Pretoria West and Garankuwa campuses barricaded the entrances with burning tyres as the university reopened today.

Spokesperson Willa de Ruyter says: "We'll continue to assess the situation and we'll post regular updates on our website on www.tut.ac.za."

Meanwhile, some academics at Wits University have raised concerns over the high security and police presence at the institution, saying it breeds violence on campus.

Protests at Wits have gone into a third week now, with clashes between students and police, a bus being set alight, shops looted and number of people injured, including a Catholic priest.

This morning three petrol bombs were found on the West campus.

The academics say the presence of private security and police doesn't make for a conducive learning environment.

#Fees2017: Classes & clashes continue at Wits

Senior lecturer Lumkile Monde says: "I'm very concerned about high security. We know that security in South Africa breeds violence, they don't understand the students."

Mondi says the only way to quell tensions and to find a solution to the #FeesMustFall crisis is through dialogue.

"But we win the students over to ensure that we're on their side, however, we've got the responsibility to know that we can finish the academic year."

CPUT REMAINS TENSE

Officials are assessing the damage to two buildings that were set alight at the C ape Peninsula University of Technology's (CPUT) Bellville campus.

University management has opened a case of attempted murder after two guards were allegedly locked inside a burning building.

Violence erupted at three of the institution's campuses yesterday. The arson attacks occurred overnight.

There's a strong police presence at the Bellville campus this morning.

Glass, bricks and burnt rubble litter the ground at the main entrance, evidence of the violence which has been blamed on protesting students.

The torched buildings have been cordoned off with police tape. On the inside, water spews out of damaged taps and pipes.

Classes have been suspended at all of CPUT's Cape Town campuses.

The university's Lauren Kansley says a building at the Cape Town campus was also set alight.