Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Outrage at Walter Sisulu University closure

Students had been told to vacate the Eastern Cape university because of labour trouble, said administrator Lourens van Staden.

The Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) in the Eastern Cape said it was absurd that higher education minister Blade Nzimande had not intervened in the five-week long labour impasse.

"This means the university has not engaged into its core business of teaching and learning for more than a month now," the PAC said in a statement.

Including the time lost during student strikes at the beginning of the year and more recently, the university had lost more than two months of teaching time.

The Congress of the People Student Movement (CSM) called for an immediate intervention at the university, which serves some of the country's poorest communities.

"We are not treated in the same way as the other 22 universities in South Africa, and sending students home is not a solution on the matter," CSM student movement said in a statement. "Rather address what is needed to be done."

The South African Students' Congress (Sasco) said it was disgusted at the decision to close the university.

"We call on the administrator to reverse this ridiculous and misguided decision," it said.

"Students of Walter Sisulu University have never been harmful to themselves and to the various communities they are staying in. [They] have been engaged in various peaceful protests insisting that they want to go back to class."

Sasco said the labour impasse and the students' past complaints had been proof of the university administration's failures.

The Pan Africanist Student Movement of Azania said the university's closure was a direct consequence of a lack of leadership by Van Staden and the department of higher education. – Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and receive a 40% discount on our annual rate..

Guest Author

Related stories


Subscribers only

Seven years’ radio silence for taxpayer-funded Rhythm FM

Almost R50-million of taxpayers’ money has been invested but the station is yet to broadcast a single show

Q&A Sessions: Zanele Mbuyisa — For the love of people-centred...

She’s worked on one of the biggest class-action cases in South Africa and she’s taken on Uber: Zanele Mbuyisa speaks to Athandiwe Saba about advocating for the underrepresented, getting ‘old’ and transformation in the law fraternity

More top stories

Denel money woes clip air force’s wings

A senior officer says the shortage of spares and and ability to service aircraft and vehicles has a negative effect on the SANDF’s operational ability

State fails at-risk children as R55m orphanage stands empty

Boikagong Centre in Mahikeng has been closed for almost two years because it did not meet safety requirements. The discarded children say they want a safe place to learn, but instead endure rape and other violence

Wildlife farming vs Creecy’s panel

The departments of environment and agriculture legislation are at odds over modifying the genes of wild animals

Drugs and alcohol abuse rage in crime stats

Substance abuse has emerged as a reason for the spike in crimes during the first quarter of 2021.

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…