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Nelson Mandela University's Sasco students threaten walkout

The Nelson Mandela University. File photo
The Nelson Mandela University. File photo
Image: wikivillage.co.za

The South African Students Congress on the Nelson Mandela University campus in Port Elizabeth is threatening a protest on Wednesday over allegations of students sleeping outside and not receiving allowances.

"We have given the university time to fix things. Our students can't be treated like this," Sasco said in a statement on Facebook.

We advice all cars to be out of University in 10 minutes!

Posted by SASCO Nelson Mandela University on Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Some classes were disrupted on Wednesday morning.

NMU said it had laid a charge at the Humewood police station.

The university issued a statement on Tuesday, clarifying how it had attempted to assist nearly 2,000 students who were unable to register for various reasons - ranging from a lack of funding to poor academic performance.

It said they were given a second chance at access to university tuition through a number of concessions by the university, including the establishment of a clearing house to assist in cases viewed as justifiably requiring consideration.

"A total 1,756 students, including more than 300 whose individual cases were assessed and dealt with by the clearing house, were allowed registration through the various concessions," said the university.

Some who could not be registered were students who had lost out on funding for repeated poor academic performance. These were "referred to the relevant channels to assist in identifying career paths specifically geared for them and to enable their success."

Accommodation was not easily resolved, the university said. "The university’s on-campus residences are full to capacity. Accredited off-campus accommodation is meant for funded or self-paying students, as the university does not own the residences and thus cannot enforce its internal concessions on service providers.

"About 120 students who were without accommodation for various reasons were granted access to on-campus residences. There are a number of students who remain unfunded after their appeals were unsuccessful for various reasons, such as poor academic performance."

In total, NMU said 28,650 students have been registered, which is up 4% on last year.

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