Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency(ANA)
Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency(ANA)

Lectures to resume at DUT

By Mercury Reporter Time of article published Sep 17, 2019

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Durban - Classes are set to resume at the Durban University of Technology after students went on rampage following the brutal attack of Sandile Ndlovu and the death of another student two days later. 

DUT spokesperson, Nduduzo Ndlovu said members of the management team met with the SRC since last week and has had follow up meetings where the SRC tabled their concerns around the safety of students on campus and in residence. 

"They also demanded that DUT remove Excellent Security, who are the contracted, private security provider on campus. We urged the SRC to give us the opportunity to complete the procurement process for the appointment of the new security services provider. Furthermore, there have been speculation regarding the investigation into the incident involving Sandile Ndlovu. Contrary to some media reports and social media claims, DUT has been co-operating with the police investigation into the incident involving the student. DUT has given the police access to the CCTV footage. Regretfully, there was no camera footage of the actual attack against Ndlovu. The CCTV footage, some of it showing Sandile’s and others’ movements before he went into the lecture venue, has not been tampered with. We are also eager for the suspect to be apprehended. Management can confirm that the university continues to engage with the Ndlovu family and yesterday, members of the Ndlovu family were on campus to meet with colleagues from Student Services and Protection Services," Ndlovu said. 

He said on Tuesday, the SRC threatened to continue to halt lectures. 

"This demand has serious implications for the more than 34000 DUT students, our staff and our stakeholders," he said. 

Ndlovu said a joint meeting between DUT's Executive Management Committee (EMC) and the Executive Committee of Senate (SENEX) considered the demands of the SRC and the impact on all students and staff of the university. 

The meeting also acknowledged the existence of internal and external groups with hidden agendas and vested interests, who are helping to destabilise the university.

"Management was also extremely concerned following the petrol bomb attack that caused damage to the squash courts on Steve Biko campus yesterday morning. We urge protestors to remain peaceful, to respect the law and to value University property, which ultimately, serves the students and staff. As a result, EMC and SENEX agreed that suspending the academic programme any longer will compromise our students, especially considering that a majority of students are busy with tests and assessments. We are also working towards the final examinations which will commence in a few weeks," Ndlovu said. 

He said DUT had obtained a valid court interdict and the police will enforce the orders of the High Court.

"We advise the SRC and the protesting students to act within the confines of the law and to respect the rights of students who want to study and to not intimidate the members of staff, who want to teach and keep the campuses and residences operational. The university apologises to all students, staff, parents, guardians and stakeholders for the inconvenience caused by the suspension of the academic programme," he said. 

The Mercury

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