The vice-chancellors of Gauteng universities voiced their concerns regarding the #FeesMustFall movement at the University of Johannesburg earlier.
University of the Witwatersrand vice-chancellors, Adam Habib, pleaded with society and political leaders in particular to help ensure the smooth-running of registration and re-opening of universities.
“Every one of us is committed to creating affordable, quality, higher education. The only point we’re saying is that it’s going to take some time. Don’t bring the university to a standstill, don’t destroy them now because if you do that, you’ll never be able to rebuild them again,” says Habib.
The vice-chancellors tackled various issues regarding the #FeesMustFall, including the beefing up of security in the various universities. A heavy presence of security guards with the torsos of bouncers was present at the University of Johannesburg.
“We don’t want to have extra security at our universities but we have to protect our students, staff and facilities. The university has to pay over a million per month for the extra security which is a highly unnecessary cost,” says University of Johannesburg vice-chancellor, Prof Ihron Rensburg.
Three of the universities were granted court interdicts last week to ensure the smooth running of registrations. The vice-chancellors maintain that this was also part of a security measure.
“Students who want to protest can still protest, only if they do so in a peaceful manner and do not disturb registrations or the start of the academic year,” says Habib.