UCT students out on bail

Five students arrested at the University of Cape Town on Monday were reunited with family and friends outside the Wynberg magistrate’s court yesterday where they appeared in connection with charges of public violence and alternative charges of attending an illegal gathering, assaulting and hindering police.

The five — Sally Andrew, Carol Greene, Andrew Brown, Salie Adam, Siophian Mill — were not asked to plead and their case was postponed to June 3 “for further investigation.” They were released on bail of R50 each. Eighteen students arrested at UCT during Tuesday’s protest are expected to appear in the Wynberg Magistrates Court today in connection with attending an illegal gathering.

In Stellenbosch, meanwhile, a ban on the activities of the National Union of SA Students (Nusas) and the Black Students’ Society (BSS) has been lifted — amid confusion as to who imposed it in the first place. Students said acting rector, Professor Roux de Villiers’ change of heart came after about 100 students marched to his office this week, bearing petitions calling for the ban to be lifted.

The two organisations were told they could no longer operate on campus until a students’ representative council investigation was completed. De Villiers ordered the inquiry which was due to start today. The investigation follows a meeting last Friday where students twice prevented a man — who later identified himself as a security policeman — from arresting SA Railway and Harbour Workers’ Union (Sarhwu) shop steward Morris Ndou after he addressed students on campus in defiance of an order by De Villiers.

Meanwhile, University of Western Cape students, now in their second week of a class boycott, are staging daily sit-ins outside the administration building where a four-member commission of inquiry is investigating student demands that a dentistry professor be dismissed. UWC’s 120 dentistry students have been on boycott since April 7, claiming that the head of Conservative Dentistry, Professor Jeffrey Cohen, is prejudiced against students on the basis of their political involvement. The students have rejected the commission.

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Gaye Davis
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