Parliament, Thursday, 05 March 2020 – The Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training is gravely concerned about the suspension of the University of Fort Hare’s academic programme due to on-going violent protests.
The Chairperson of the Committee, Mr Philly Mapulane, said: “These developments are disappointing because they are not keeping up with the spirit of the engagement held with university management and student leadership in Parliament on Tuesday, 3 March 2020. We are also concerned about the evacuation of students from residences. This move by the university will expose students to further safety risks outside the university precincts.”
“We wish to take this opportunity to call on the UFH Administrator, Professor Loyiso Nongxa, to rise to the occasion and provide decisive leadership in addressing the situation at the University of Fort Hare,” said Mr Mapulane.
“We are also concerned about the reported collapse of the stakeholder forum/committee established by the university to address issues of interest with stakeholders. The portfolio committee calls for the opening of communication channels with stakeholders to address the issue that led to the impasse with students,” he continued.
The portfolio committee respects the right of students to protest, but condemns the violence, aggression and vandalism displayed at many university campuses in the past weeks. Furthermore, following on from the engagement on 3 March with the management of the University of Kwazulu-Natal, Mr Mapulane implored the University of KwaZulu-Natal to consider extending the registration period to accommodate the three percent of students who have not yet registered.
ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON HIGHER EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, MR PHILLY MAPULANE.
For media enquiries or interviews with the Chairperson, please contact the Committee’s Media Officer:
Name: Sibongile Maputi (Mr)
Parliamentary Communication Services
Tel: 021 403 8041
Cell: 081 052 6060
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