Wits closes entrances as student injured in university protests

07 Feb, 2019 - 00:02 0 Views

The Herald

JOHANNESBURG. — All entrances to the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) have been closed to avoid protests from EFF-aligned students, believed to be from the University of Johannesburg (UJ).

“We closed (the entrances) so that the external EFF-aligned protesters marching to UJ do not enter our campuses. They have moved to UJ now,” Wits spokesperson Shirona Patel told News24.

A group of students, clad in red, marched through Kingsway Avenue to UJ’s Kingsway Campus in Auckland Park yesterday.

The group initially started at Wits and after they were barred from entering its Braamfontein campus, made their way back to Auckland Park. Clashes erupted when a group of security personnel confronted them. Students threw stones and bricks at the guards, who retaliated. Teargas canisters were discharged and the students fled.

One student was injured on his head when he was caught in the crossfire. The student identified himself only as Thabo. Paramedics took him away.

Some UJ students were stranded in the parking lot and a few students took refuge at a nearby public transport station. By early evening, the situation had calmed down after protesting students dispersed from the scene.

Meanwhile, back at Wits, members of the student representative council (SRC) continued with their second day of a hunger strike at Solomon Mahlangu House (the institution’s administration block).

However, SRC president Sisanda Aluta Mbolekwa said attendance was poor, saying students feared intimidation from private security guards who had been deployed to the campus. — News24.

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