Protests force TUT to close varsity residences

A TUT student is seen rushing to board a bus to get home after students recieved a notification asking them to leave residences for their own safety due to an impending protest for justice of the student, Katlego Monareng, who was shot and killed by police during an SRC protest, 12 September 2018, Soshanguve TUT North Campus, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

A TUT student is seen rushing to board a bus to get home after students recieved a notification asking them to leave residences for their own safety due to an impending protest for justice of the student, Katlego Monareng, who was shot and killed by police during an SRC protest, 12 September 2018, Soshanguve TUT North Campus, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

‘All we got was a notification saying we need to leave campus because it’s unsafe for students to remain here,’ a student said.

The Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) shut its Soshanguve residences yesterday following weeks of protests.

To ensure the students’ safety, the university requested all students evacuate their residences by 10am today.

The Soshanguve campuses have been shut for two weeks since violent protests broke out. Students were demanding justice for fellow student Katlego Monareng, who was killed by police during a student representative council protest last month.

The university said that they took a decision to evacuate all students living in residences as the situation on campus remained “volatile”.

“The university had no choice but to come to this decision, which aims to normalise the situation at the institution. A contingency plan, including increased security at these campuses, will be implemented to ensure safety of the campus community once activities resume,” TUT spokesperson Willa De Ruyter said.

She said the campus rector would assist in the process of finding alternative accommodation for international students, work integrated learning students and students who could provide “exceptional reasons”.

When The Citizen visited the campus yesterday, many students seemed confused and fearful, refusing to speak.

“All we got was a notification saying we need to leave campus because there is a strike and it’s unsafe for students to remain here,” said a female student who spoke to The Citizen on condition of anonymity.

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