Disagreement over UJ fee increases

A disagreement broke out on Wednesday over whether University of Johannesburg (UJ) students would honour a memorandum of agreement on fee increases.

While the independent mediator called in to resolve the dispute claimed an agreement ending the impasse was in place, the Student Representative Council (SRC) said no accord had yet been reached.

“We have not yet reached an agreement with the university,” said SRC spokesperson George Molepo.

He refused to confirm whether the SRC had signed any memorandum of agreement, saying only that the SRC would release a statement.

Meanwhile, mediator Onkgopotse Tabane said a memorandum of agreement ending the disagreement over fee increments was signed at 12.30pm on Wednesday.

He has presided over talks since Friday after being called in to help with the agreement of both parties.

Tabane is a council member of the University of the North West.

He said the agreement entailed an 11,1% fee increase for a degree instead of the original 14%. The fee for a diploma would go up 9% instead of 13%.

In his statement Tabane said the president of the SRC was happy with the agreement and that it was “a victory for the students that the university finally agreed to lower their original proposals”.

University spokesperson Sonia Cronjé was not immediately available for comment.—Sapa

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