The Economic Freedom Fighters Student Command (EFFSC) has threatened revolt and promised to make the country ungovernable, should the state continue to hunt down and prosecute student activists involved in the Fees Must Fall protests that started in 2015.
This comes just a week after Higher Education and Training Minister Naledi Pandor revealed to the Democratic Alliance that institutions of higher learning suffered nearly R800 million in protest damage in the past three financial years.
On Monday, Fees Must Fall activist and Durban University of Technology student Bonginkosi Khanyile was convicted on charges of public violence‚ failing to comply with the police and possession of a dangerous weapon. The charges relate to the violent protests at the Durban University of Technology (DUT).
On Tuesday night, EFFSC secretary-general Rendani Nematswerani noted the Durban High Court’s judgment with “disgruntlement”.
He said the student body was aware “there has been a notion to silence student activism through a [perpetual] threat of imprisonment”.
“We want to make it clear to the ANC-led government that if this vicious brutality of student activists continues, that if they continue to hunt our own so mercilessly, it will be met with the utmost of revolt,” Nematswerani said.
He said the “radical and militant organisation” would mobilise students across the country and continue to forge the struggle that was started in 2016.
“If it calls that for us to make this country ungovernable for our cries to be heard and adhered to, then so be it. A direct threat towards our affiliation as students will be met by direct retaliation,” Nematswerani said.