A boycott of classes is looming at the 27 institutions of higher learning in the country as the South African Union of Students lobbies students to reject any attempt to increase university fees.
The union is one of the few student bodies which has already made presentations to the Fees Commission chaired by Judge Jonathan Arthur Heher. The commission commenced with its inquest last Wednesday in Pretoria before moving to Vanderbijlpark, south of Johannesburg.
Union spokesperson Sthembiso Ndlovu said here Sunday that they were disappointed with the way the mission established to look into the feasibility of free education was conducting its investigations and interviews.
“We still maintain that the commission is useless and is waste of time and is a waste of money, because it does not seek to bring about progressive resolutions and proper engagement. We were not engaged about our presentation, but other stakeholders were engaged. So to us that is a form of undermining of the highest order. And we maintain that we will continue with our inter-action with the students.”
Ndlovu said the union was busy with organizing mass meetings in all institutions of higher learning.
“Nothing has stopped. The president is busy dealing with mass meetings in KwaZulu-Natal (Province). The Treasurer General is busy doing mass meeting in Eastern Cape (Province),” said Ndoluvu.
“Before we came to Gauteng (Province), we did a mass meeting in the University of Cape Town. So, we’ll continue with our work as usual. (We’ll) continue to prepare students for a national shutdown that is due.”
The Pan Africanist Student Movement of Azania (Pasma) has also rejected the Fees Commission which was established to investigate the feasibility of free education in the country.
Pasma Spokesperson Vusi Mahlangu said the student movement’s boycott of the commission was based on the fact that such inquests are used by politicians to buy time. Mahlangu said the decision to scrap fees remained a political decision and could not be resolved by the establishment of powerless commissions.
“We, however, decided to boycott the commission because we believe that is nothing but a toothless circus, like all other commissions before …. we are going to start our mobilisation against any attempted fee increments. We are also again reaffirming our call for free education which does not need a commission to be decided upon.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK