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Student march turns violent with police firing rubber bullets

A student march to the Union Buildings in order to deliver a memorandum has turned violent on the streets of the nation's capital, with police firing rubber bullets at students.  

On Wednesday, tertiary students from various institutions marched to the Union Buildings to submit a memorandum of demands over the defunding of students and NSFAS payment system, eZaga. 

However, once at the presidential offices, the student leadership decided to change course and deliver their demands to higher education minister Blade Nzimande at the department's offices. The students were told that Nzimande was not available but they could present their memo to a director-general Dr Nkosinathi Sishi, an offer which the students declined.

In the Pretoria CBD along Francis Baard street, the protest turned violent with the police shooting rubber bullets at students as well as physically assaulting students. 

Several arrests have been made at this stage.  

The protesting students are from North West University and University of Limpopo among others.  

The students claim that many of them have been unfairly defunded by the NSFAS and that they were also against the new online payment system of their allowances. 

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