#FeesMustFall march in Durban peaceful, some campus protests

African News Agency (ANA)‎

#FeesMustFall march in Durban peaceful, some campus protests
Durban University of Technology (DUT) Photo: (@DUT_Tweets) via Twitter

About 3000 people converged on the Durban City Hall following a #FeesMustFall march on Tuesday.
The march from the city’s Curries Fountain Stadium was peaceful amid a heavy police presence.

However, while the marchers were proceeding peacefully to the City Hall small student protests ‎erupted at the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Pietermaritzburg, Howard College and Westville campuses.

University spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said in a statement issued late Tuesday, that at the Westville campus students attempted to disrupt lectures and damaged some facilities at one of the residences.

In another protest at the Pietermaritzburg, protesters had to be dispersed from a computer lab while students on the Howard College Campus “were singing and chanting at a campus hall”.

“University Management has cautioned protesters to desist from engaging in unlawful protest action. Action will be taken against any individuals found to be in contravention of the High Court interdict in place. A strong security presence is being maintained on all of our campuses,” said Seshoka.

Initially about 1500 students from both the University of KwaZulu-Natal and the Durban University of Technology (DUT) converged on Curries Fountain. They later marched and were joined by more students who converged in front of the Durban City Hall, where they were addressed by various leaders.

There was a heavy police presence at both Howard College and Westville campuses as well as throughout the march. Speakers who addressed the students urged restraint and for the march to be peaceful.

There was a heavy presence of Public Order Policing Units, eThekwini Metro Police units, police officers on horses ‎and various other police units.

DUT spokesman Alan Khan said that the institution’s academic programme proceeded without any disruptions.

At the city hall several speakers addressed the students, with Bishop Mike Vorster of the Methodist Church promising to bring the students’ demands up when the church dealt with government.

One speaker pledged that University of South Africa (Unisa) students would bring that institution to a standstill.

Mbuso Ngubane, the KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary of the National Union of Metalworkers of SA pledged the union’s support for the students’ demands, including “free decolonised quality education”.

The students’ memorandum urged an end too alleged police brutality.

“We demand an end to the militarization (sic) of our institutions of higher learning. This includes the heavy presence of SAPS, Metro Police and private security companies which run rampants (sic) and brutalize (sic) students haphazardly, targeting and intimidating student leaders.”

They demanded that all charges against students arrested during protests be dropped and that any students currently detained, be released without any conditions.

“We demand that should students and members of civil society be arrested for participating in protest action, they must not be detained in prison cells with convicted criminals. Students who are currently in prison are experiencing extreme violence at the hands of convicted rapists, murders (sic) and abusers.”

They also demanded a meeting before October 14 with business leaders and all stakeholders doing business with the Durban Harbour.

South Africa Today – South Africa News

SOURCEAfrican News Agency (ANA)‎