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Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday expressed shock amid reports that students at the North West University had used the Nazi salute.
“The use of gestures associated with Nazism are shunned... throughout the world and are relics of a time which symbolised oppression, persecution and some of the worst atrocities committed in human history,” Zuma said in a speech prepared for delivery at the university.
Beeld newspaper reported on February 21 that some students had used the Nazi “Sieg Heil” during an initiation ceremony.
Photographs were published by the newspaper showing groups of students at the University of the North West doing Nazi salutes.
Zuma said universities should develop responsible citizens and future leaders who were just, free-thinking and committed to building a society free of intolerance and injustice.
“The ANC government takes this matter seriously and will not tolerate any unconstitutional activities that are perpetrated at any education and training institution,” he said.
Zuma told students that Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande was looking into the matter. - Sapa