Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

Immediate suspension awaits three students accused of beating another student to death.

The University of Limpopo's Turfloop campus said yesterday that George Tsoai, 24, Raymond Mabelebele, 23 and Tibane Serumula, 22, would be suspended from the institution - if and when they were released from jail.

The students were denied bail yesterday by the Mankweng magistrate's court in connection with the killing.

The three allegedly beat Nkosinathi Mhlongo during a minibus trip from Pretoria on Friday.

Mhlongo apparently refused to sing a protest song on a minibus ferrying the students to Turfloop.

According to the university the accused, affiliated to Sasco, asked for a lift to Polokwane in a mini- bus that ferried only members of the Students Christian Organisation (SCO).

"An argument ensued when they forcefully tried to stop the SCO members from singing Christian songs. Mhlongo allegedly refused to sing their protest songs and was allegedly beaten all the way from Mokgophong to Mankweng Hospital."

Police spokesman Malan Nchabeleng said his body was thrown out of the rear window of the minibus near the hospital.

"The body was hit by an oncoming vehicle and was found in a shocking state in the road,"he said.

University spokesman Stanley Mohuba said management had taken a united stand and would suspend the three.

"This is an institution of learning to produce good leaders of tomorrow, not criminals," Mohuba said.

Limpopo Sasco chairman Richard Ramashia said: "We fought crime in our communities for years.

"We will not be associated with this kind of behaviour."