Some Wits students plan silent march for classes to resume


However, he said, most operations proceeded at the university, which had also been shut because of demonstrations.

She said lecturers were going ahead on the Braamfontein West Campus and other campuses‚ and that police had used stun grenades to disperse groups of protesters who had been assembling at the institution, disrupting classes.

Earlier, the university had announced it would re-open on Wednesday, despite violence from police against student protesters that had ripped through the university on Tuesday. But unrest has boiled up again since the commission said on September 19 that fees would continue to rise.

Police and private security guards in riot gear massed in the city-centre campus through the morning.

“In a shameful effort by the ANC government to distract South Africans from their evident abandonment of higher education and to further avoid further marches to Luthuli House and the Union Buildings, they have pitted universities against students”, she said.

“It´s not right”, said one final year law student, who was not taking part in the protest but did not want to give his name.

Yesterday, Wits University agreed to suspend the academic programme for the remainder of the week following talks with former leaders and SRC.

A #FeesMustFall mass meeting is being held at Wits University this afternoon ahead of tomorrow’s general assembly.

Most students at Wits University voted to end protests through cellphone SMS, university management confirmed.

Student activism played a central role in the fight against apartheid, with the massacre of pupils in Soweto by white police officers in 1976 seen as a key date in the country’s tumultuous history.

According to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Adam Habib, they need fee hikes of 8 per cent “or they are dead in the water”.

On Monday, President Jacob Zuma condemned the violent student protests, saying it had caused an estimated 600 million rand ($44 million) loss in terms of damage done to university properties. “Just a year ago we were making the argument that there should be no cops on campus, that universities should not have a security presence on campus”.

The South African Students Congress (Sasco) has come with a list of demands for universities and government, criticising the latter for allowing the situation to escalate to where it is now.

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