CONFUSION reigned yesterday at the University of Zimbabwe as students failed to return to campus following a directive by Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Cde Oppah Muchinguri for lessons to resume. In a statement, Cde Muchinguri said Government had released the outstanding salaries for striking lecturers.
By the time the minister made the announcement, most students had already left campus after being ordered by the university’s registrar to immediately leave and return on March 25, 2015.
University of Zimbabwe Vice Chancellor Professor Levi Nyagura yesterday reversed an earlier decision to send students home.
“Following an earlier statement issued yesterday advising students, the general public and indeed the University of Zimbabwe community that the institution was going on recess until March 24 2015, I am happy to advise that urgent issues that needed immediate attention have now been resolved.
“Consequently, lectures resume today (yesterday) March 18, 2015 at 8am,” he said.
Prof Nyagura thanked Minister Muchinguri for her timely intervention.
A visit to the university campus showed that very few students heeded the call by Professor Nyagura.
The Zimbabwe Congress of Students Union (zicosu) urged students to return to campus.
Addressing a press conference in Harare, zicosu president Tinashe Mashambo said the assurance by Minister Muchinguri was bona fide.
“We extend our gratitude to Acting President Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa, Minister Muchinguri, Deputy Minister Dr Godfrey Gandawa and the permanent secretary Dr Washington Mbizvo for their sterling efforts in ensuring that the university resumes their studies with immediate effect.
“Students issues should strictly remain in the hands of students and those who are finding political boxing ring unbearable should not seek relevance by hijacking genuine collective action by students.
“We therefore call upon students to remain calm and resolute because the situation is now under control,” he said.
zicosu secretary-general Valentine Masaiti castigated Zimbabwe National Student Union and Student United Front for politicising the situation.