WATCH: Violence continues at CPUT, 28 security guards charged

CPUT classrooms and equipment were damaged during the protests. Picture: Facebook

CPUT classrooms and equipment were damaged during the protests. Picture: Facebook

Published Sep 15, 2017


Violence entered the fourth day after private security guards disrupted a student gathering near the Sadenburg residence at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology’s Cape Town campus yesterday.

The Multi Purpose Hall, an exam venue at the CPUT Cape Town campus, was allegedly burnt by protesting students.

This after police confirmed they had apprehended 28 suspects, allegedly staff of a security company at the institution’s Cape Town campus, for being unregistered as well as for fraud under the Psira Act 56/2001.

“The suspects are due to appear in court once charged,” police spokesperson FC van Wyk said.

At the institution’s Journalism and Public Relations building in Roeland Street in the city centre, a clash between students and private security guards led to a computer lab being damaged.

A student leader was adamant they would not attend the installation of Thandi Modise as chancellor at CPUT’s Bellville campus.

One of the students, who wanted his name to be withheld, said: “We were invited by (Higher Education Minister Blade) Nzimande to attend the ceremony in Bellville. We will not go there.

“It is a trap and they want us to go there so they can say we disrupted the ceremony. We want to meet with the (acting) vice-chancellor and resolve these matters.”

Another student, who also wanted her name withheld, said: “I was supposed to write today. I wanted to write and get it over and done with.”

On Monday, an industrial design workshop building was burnt down, forcing all business and engineering activities to be suspended.

Yesterday protesters disrupted classes at the Mowbray campus, forcing a shutdown until further notice, the university confirmed.

Students and workers have been protesting for reasons including: the lifting of the suspensions of four students (Ayakha Magxothwa, Sivuyise Nolusu, Neo Mongale and Lukhanyo Vanqa); the clarification of the insourced worker contracts; the release of two students (aged 18 and 26) who were allegedly arrested by police at Sir Lowry Road near New Market Junction on Tuesday.

Acting vice-chancellor Dr Chris Nhlapo said: “While protests were disruptive, university management were determined that the majority of staff and students should be able to complete assessments and a full working day. 

A second private security company has been brought on board to assist in stabilising the situation. Students are requested to make contact with their lecturers for more detailed information about their individual courses.”

In a statement yesterday, the university said the matter between CPUT and the four suspended students, and all other persons trespassing, unlawfully conducting themselves or unlawfully occupying any portion or building or residences and the Minister of Police will be heard today at the Western Cape High Court.

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