All academic activities have been suspended for the day at Rhodes University. University Vice Chancellor Dr Sizwe Mabizela made the decision on Wednesday after students moved through the campus disrupting lectures and barricading buildings.
He has called students and staff for a meeting at 1.30pm on the Drostdy Lawns to publicly communicate the university’s position regarding funding of higher education.
About 500 protesting students had insisted that no photos or videos be taken of their actions as they fear repercussions from management for defying a court interdict preventing them from protesting.
They have released a list of demands that include a 10% tax on corporates to help fund free higher education and that big businesses employ graduates. They also demanded that Rhodes staff and management who own property rented to students immediately slash the “exorbitant” rentals.
They say management must account for the presence of police on campus. They also insisted that the shutdown would be long-term.
About 100 students had earlier invaded the foyer of the main administration building. Staff locked themselves into their offices.
At the time of publishing‚ a small crowd was moving through the administration section saying everybody must evacuate the building. The situation is tense.
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