TUT, SRC reopen talks
Pretoria - Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) management and the student representative council (SRC) have re-opened talks to resolve the ongoing protests at the university, the SRC said on Wednesday.
“The university has re-opened talks to discuss the issues tabled in the memorandum that was submitted to the office of Vice Chancellor and Principal last week,” secretary general Sigfried Tivana said in a statement.
“We are very happy that the Executive Management has realised that only dialogue can resolve the impasse we are all subjected 1/8to 3/8.”
He said TUT's students wanted to be in class and could not afford to lose more time demonstrating because of management's unavailability.
“This strike was not even supposed to take longer than two days but because we are dealing with academics that are not honest and open we have now wasted students' time,” Tivana said.
The SRC hoped the meeting, which Tivana said began at 5pm, would provide positive results for TUT's students.
TUT, in regards to the re-opening of talks, was not immediately available for comment.
Earlier on Wednesday, TUT spokeswoman Willa de Ruyter said violent protests had again erupted at the university, forcing management to close the Pretoria campus.
The university had expected students back in class on Wednesday following several days of violent strike action, De Ruyter said.
“They were meant to return but violent protests erupted again at Pretoria and Soshanguve, the arts and Arcadia campuses. We decided to close the Pretoria campus for today 1/8Wednesday 3/8.”
Students blocked the gates to the campuses, she said.
Police had been called in and security had been increased on the campuses.
“Students have been returning to their lectures. We are monitoring the situation at all our campuses.”
On Tuesday, Tivana said students would not return as management had not yet resolved their issues.
“There won't be any classes tomorrow. It is a lie from a pit of hell that students will return to class,” he said.
“Whoever comes to the campus will be there to join the strike.”
Students would only go back to classes once management had addressed their concerns and re-admitted suspended SRC members.
TUT announced on Monday that it had served the SRC with suspension letters on Sunday.