Students arrested after allegedly torching two UKZN buildings
Five people, believed to be students, were arrested after two University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) buildings at Westville Campus were petrol bombed on Monday.
This comes after students allegedly protested about the required 15% upfront payment of a student’s historical debt that students must pay before being allowed to register.
The university told TimesLIVE that the Westville Campus was marred by criminal activities on Monday.
It said the criminal acts involved the stoning of a guard house at Forest Hill residence and the petrol bombing of two administrative offices.
UKZN corporate relations executive director Normah Zondo said the Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) office, in the Gandhi Luthuli Documentation Centre (GLDC), was one of the buildings damaged during the petrol bomb attack.
She said the second office damaged belonged to the Infrastructure Planning and Projects (IPP) department.
“Fortunately, risk management services were quick to respond and put out the fires, limiting the damage. A full damage assessment is being undertaken. One of the people arrested was witnessed participating in the destruction of the guard house at Forest Hill residence. This incident led to a staff member from risk management services sustaining injuries,” said Zondo.
Other suspects were arrested after they were allegedly found in possession of a petrol bomb.
The matter has been referred to law enforcement agencies, and the police would be better placed to provide more details on the ongoing investigation, she said.
“These actions are aimed at rendering the institution ungovernable and are antithetical to teaching and learning. The university will continue to work with law enforcement agencies to ensure the safety of all staff, students, and property,” added Zondo.
UKZN SRC president Wandile Majozi is among several EFF Student Command (EFFSC) members who were arrested after a student protest on Monday.
Yaya Mnikwa, EFFSC media officer in KZN, said Majozi was on his way from his residence to a meeting to discuss the protesting students' grievances.
“After being informed of the protest, the president was going to attend the meeting that sought to address the students' grievances when he was apprehended. He was not even in the protest,” said Mnikwa.
“There’s a policy to pay 15% upfront and mostly black people can’t afford it. Even those who are funded by NSFAS still haven’t been allocated residence,” he said.
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