UJ is to blame for stampede
A DECISION by the University of Johannesburg to close the Canary Road entrance and only use the Annet Road entrance of the Bunting Road campus caused the tragic stampede that led to the death of a mother.
A report into the January 10 stampede that led to the death of Gloria Sekwena when about 8000 people jostled to enter the campus for late registration was compiled by retired Constitutional Court judge Yvonne Mokgoro, University of Free State registrar Dr Derek Swemmer and events risk consultant Rick Meyer.
Findings of the investigations indicate that "the provisions of the Safety at Sports and Recreational Events Act of 2010 were not complied with in all respects".
One of the recommendations of the investigation was that the university not abandon, but rather reposition their late applications and admissions philosophy.
UJ vice-chancellor and principal Professor Ihron Rensburg said they would appoint an events safety manager and that no "walk-in" late applications would be allowed next year.
"A dedicated communication campaign to inform prospective students of the many opportunities for electronic applications that exist is already under way and will be intensified towards year-end.
"An operational plan has also been designed to deal with prospective students who nevertheless arrive at UJ at the beginning of 2013 in order to apply late," Rensburg said.
Last week, Minister of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande said that following the stampede, his department would implement the first phase of the central applications system.
The system will assist students looking for placements in January as well as those not accepted by their initial choice of university who seek options.
'Walk-in' late applications not allowed