Chinese ambassador donates R200 000 to UCT after Cape Town fire damage
Pretoria – China’s embassy in South Africa has donated R200 000 to the University of Cape Town (UCT) after parts of the world-renowned institution’s main campus were ravaged by fire at the weekend, forcing the evacuation of thousands of students.
Chinese Ambassador Chen Xiaodong made the donation on Wednesday during a virtual meeting with UCT Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng.
“Ambassador Chen ... spoke highly of the timely and effective response of the university, as well as the work done by Professor Phakeng to ensure the safety of students, faculty and staff, including Chinese students,” the embassy said in a statement.
“In order to support the UCT in addressing the fallout of the fire and start rebuilding, the embassy decided to provide a certain amount of donation to the school.”
According to the statement, Professor Phakeng said the donation “fully reflects the deep friendship between the South African and Chinese peoples and is of great significance to the UCT”.
Amb. Chen Xiaodong expressed sympathy and support to Prof. Phakeng from UCT and for their great losses in the massive...Posted by Chinese Embassy in South Africa onThursday, 22 April 2021
In a statement on Wednesday, the university said work had begun to return students to their residences and it had established a cross-divisional task team to coordinate the process. It said the fire had resulted in the emergency evacuation of approximately 4 000 students.
Professor Phakeng said the institution would make alternative arrangements for those residences deemed unsafe due to fire damage.
“We anticipate that we will be able to get students back into university accommodation on Thursday... barring unforeseen issues,” she added.
“Our priority is the safety and health of every student, and to create the conditions necessary for a full return to the university’s academic programme as soon as possible.”
African News Agency (ANA)