TUT Soshanguve students march to the offices of police minister

According to student leader Sthembiso KaShandu, university staff, trade unions and NGOs have been asked to pledge solidarity with students. (Renata Larroyd)

According to student leader Sthembiso KaShandu, university staff, trade unions and NGOs have been asked to pledge solidarity with students. (Renata Larroyd)

Following the death of Tshwane University of Technology law student Katlego Andries Monareng last week, students on the north and south campuses at Soshanguve are marching to the offices of Police Minister Bheki Cele.

According to student leader Sthembiso KaShandu, university staff, trade unions and NGOs have been asked to pledge solidarity with students and join them on the march on Wednesday.

The march is meant to “garner public sympathy to force the minister of police to give this issue special attention,” said KaShandu.

Monareng was allegedly shot by a police officer following a protest against a perceived ‘rigged’ student representative council election outside Soshanguve north campus.

TUT and the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) have initiated a forensic investigation into last week Thursday’s events.

According to Ipid spokesperson Moses Dlamini, the ballistic report will take six weeks before results will be made available. He said the directorate is still investigating the bullet that killed Monareng. 

This week, all six TUT campuses were closed as the institution mourns the death of Monareng. Flags were also flown at half-mast. The university will hold a memorial service on Thursday, and Monareng’s funeral will be held on Saturday at Bushbuckridge in Mpumalanga.

The issue of the SRC elections — which were never completed following allegations of vote-rigging — will be handled after a week of mourning, said Dr Eskia Moroka, deputy vice-chancellor of student affairs and extra-curricula development.

Although academic activities have been put on hold, “Students must not lose a single day of teaching,” said deputy vice-chancellor Professor Stanley Mukhola.

“The exams were suppose to start in early November, but now we have decided they will start on November 12 and end on November 30,” Mukhola added.

The re-examination date has been rescheduled from December 3 to 14.

TUT said that it is supporting the family by paying for the funeral and supporting Monareng’s family by dispatching social workers in this time of grief.

“We aspire to be a people’s university. We are proud to cater for the poorest of the poor,” said vice-chancellor Professor Lourens van Staden.

Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie works in the Mail & Guardian's online department. She majored in English Literature at a small liberal arts college in the USA.  Read more from Gemma Ritchie

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