UCT and Rhodes suspend lectures amid protests

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STUDENT protests over tuition fee increases spread on Monday, with the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Rhodes University suspending their academic programmes in response to demonstrations.

UCT said in a statement on Monday that it suspended classes on its main campus to prevent an escalation of violence after students blocked roads reportedly in protest of an 11% tuition hike.

Similar protests in Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape saw Rhodes University suspend classes as students took to the streets in the early hours of Monday morning. The Daily Dispatch reported on Monday that about 100 students armed with sticks were preventing other students from using the Rhodes University gym.

Protests at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) entered their second week, with a meeting between the university council and student leaders expected early on Monday afternoon.

Wits suspended at 10.5% fee increase at the weekend, after three days of student protests in which the protesters blocked entrances and exits to the Johannesburg campus.

The university announced at the weekend that classes would remain suspended on Monday, but said the academic programme was expected to resume on Tuesday.

Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande is expected to hold a media briefing later on Tuesday to address the protests.

By Karl Gernetzky, Business Day 19 Oct 2015,

 

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