South Point, a privately owned residence accommodating students from Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Picture: Sisonke Mlamla/Cape Argus
South Point, a privately owned residence accommodating students from Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Picture: Sisonke Mlamla/Cape Argus

CPUT students evicted from South Point building

By Sisonke Mlamla Time of article published Jan 15, 2021

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Cape Town - Students from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) who had been occupying a privately owned residence were forcibly evicted by the management of the building.

South Point building management said the 73 students were registered for the 2020 academic year and had been illegally occupying rooms since December 27, when the 2020 academic year exams were concluded.

The management said on November 30, the university told the students to vacate the residence within 24 hours after their last exam on December 24. However, it was alleged that the 73 students remained behind, in illegal occupation of the premises.

Since Monday, private security guards have been deployed to evict the students. One of the students said they were not happy with how South Point treated “the people that pay their salaries, because if we decide to stop paying CPUT or cancel the contract they won't be getting paid but we are not there for now”.

The student, who did not want to be named for fear of victimisation said: “This whole thing started in 2017, when we used to complain about bad service they were giving us, but at least after our latest protest they managed to meet our demands and now in the midst of Covid-19 and under level 3 regulations they hired private securities to come and manhandle students in the name of the so-called unlawful eviction.”

South Point Management said the students had no legal right to remain in the premises – “we do not have any leases with these students.”

South Point, a privately owned residence accommodating students from Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Picture- Sisonke Mlamla

They said the academic year for the 73 students – including all exams, subs, re-writes and revisions – had been completed.

CPUT spokesperson Lauren Kansley, said it was their understanding that the students had been asked to leave the residence in question since December but they had ignored appeals from the service provider to do so.

Kansley said the students had ample opportunity to make alternative arrangements and travel home as most of the CPUT students had done.

“Student residences are always vacated during the festive season break to allow for deep cleaning and other essential maintenance to take place,” Kansley said.

She said any further institutional response to the situation would be based on the outcome of a court order which the service provider had applied for.

Cape Argus

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