Steven Tau
1 minute read
20 Jan 2016
9:00 am

EFF student body slams Wits accord

Steven Tau

“The tone at Wits has now changed, as it is no longer #Feesmustfall, but #Accessmustrise."

Wits University students protest at West Campus in Johannesburg, 14 October 2015, for the increasing of the upfront fee payments . Picture: Nigel Sibanda

The EFF Student Command in Tshwane says the agreement reached between Wits University and student leaders yesterday on registrations, is worrying.

The agreement entailed a commitment to free education as the ultimate goal for all students who qualify academically and who cannot afford it, and that students who cannot afford the first fee payment prior to registration will still be allowed to register by filling in a form via the self-service portal among other things.

EFF student command leader Ntando Sindane said the agreement was shocking, because Wits was dominant in the #FeesMustFall protest action last year.

“The tone at Wits has now changed, as it is no longer #Feesmustfall, but #Accessmustrise.

“This is a sellout agreement,” he said.

Ntando said University of South Africa workers and students who were arrested on Monday appeared in court yesterday.

They were released unconditionally. He said there was also a strong likelihood that striking workers would return to work today.

“The workers … also made it clear that should they return to work, this would not mean they are retreating, but just to show the university management … that our door for further talks remain open.

“The #Feesmustfall protest action will continue… in fact students are saying we should intensify the protest and this means we will have to revisit our strategies,” Sindane said.

The agreement between Wits and student leaders also says in securing and providing safety and security to the university community, police should not use undue force that violates human rights.

The university also agreed that students would be able to know their progression status, regardless of whether they had outstanding debt.