Police quash student protests at three Durban residences

Police were called in on Tuesday to disperse protesting students outside Lonsdale residence, in this file picture, in central Durban.
Police were called in on Tuesday to disperse protesting students outside Lonsdale residence, in this file picture, in central Durban.
Image: JEFF WICKS

About 200 students gathered outside three residences in central Durban on Tuesday in protest against conditions at the former hotels.

It is understood that the protests were related to a dispute with the landlords of the three former hotels which have been converted into student housing.

The public order police unit of the city’s metro police was dispatched to disperse the crowd.

Metro police spokesperson Parbhoo Sewpersad said students had gathered outside the former Lonsdale, Seaboard and Killarney hotels.

"The students were called to look at the accommodation and it appears they had a dispute with the landlord," he said. "They were unhappy with conditions and the accommodation. The public order policing unit was called in to disperse the students.

"They then entered into negotiations with the landlords. That is where things stand now."

Sewpersad said there was no violence.

"Seeing that some of the tertiary institutions are going to open shortly, we are on full alert," he added.

Mangosuthu University of Technology confirmed that its students were involved in a protest outside the Lonsdale residence.

Spokesman Bheki Hlope said that students had also staged a protest on campus in Umlazi, disrupting registration on Tuesday.

"Calm has been restored. Management has engaged the SRC and concessions have been made to allow the registration process to follow seamlessly. The registration process will resume tomorrow and close on Friday."

Last year the Lonsdale student res made headlines after a Mangosuthu University of Technology student Zolile Khumalo, 23, was allegedly shot dead by her spurned boyfriend, Thabani Mzolo.

Lectures are due to start on February 4.


Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

X