University of Fort Hare protest ends

Students at the University of Fort Hare’s East London campus have agreed to return to classes this morning.

PROTEST LINE: University of Fort Hare students have ended their protest against the varsity Picture: SINO MAJANGAZA

The resolution was taken at a mass meeting yesterday afternoon.

Students started their class boycott on March 8 demanding, among other things, that the university resolve security issues and allowances.

East London acting campus SRC premier Ahlomile Mafu said yesterday: “I can confirm that academic programme at our East London campus will resume as normal as of Thursday morning.”

She said that as part of the agreement they had with management no tests would be written or assignments submitted this week.

Another condition raised in the meeting was that management commit in writing that it would implement issues raised by the students.

“There is a task team of political parties and management that has been formed to deal with the matter.

“We also have time frames on all the issues,” she said.

UFH corporate services manager Lizo Phiti said the university vice-chancellor, Professor Sakhela Buhlungu, and the management team convened a mass meeting attended by staff and students.

“The meeting brought relief to the entire university community as management demonstrated commitment and a clear plan to address almost all the students’ demands,” he said.

Phiti said the deputy VC for academic affairs, Professor Larry Obi, would meet with all faculty deans to develop a catch-up plan for time lost. “Professor Larry Obi kindly appeals to all academics to allow students to settle for the first week before outstanding assessments are considered,” he said.

The class boycott started on March 8 after students submitted a list of demands to the management and vowed not to return to class until the issues had been resolved.

On March 16, 63 students were arrested on allegations of destruction of property.

Their cases are still before court.

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