Phahlane: Police must exercise restraint during student protests

Wits confirmed that student leader Shaeera Kalla was shot with rubber bullets during a protest.

FILE: Members of the Saps patrol around Wits University's main campus. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Acting National Police Commissioner Kgomotso Phahlane has called on officers to exercise maximum restraint and act within the confines of the law during the # FeesMustFall protests.

Yesterday, Wits University confirmed student leader Shaeera Kalla was shot in the back at least 10 times with rubber bullets.

It is understood that the incident occurred when protesting students attempted to enter the university's Great Hall.

WATCH: Wits #FeesMustFall leaders feel targeted by police

The demonstration then spilt onto the streets of Braamfontein where some students were detained.

Student leader Vuyani Pambo was briefly detained by police before releasing him minutes later.

Police spokesperson Sally De Beer says the police's approach and management of the situation around campuses must be characterised by discipline and the proportional use of force.

"Members of the police service are once again called to exercise maximum restraint and to act within the confines of the law."

She says claims that police used excessive force on students yesterday will now be the subject of an investigation by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.

She added that any officer found to have contravened the law will be dealt with accordingly.