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07 May 2019 | Story Valentino Ndaba | Photo Charl Devenish
Noko Masalesa
Noko Masalesa, Director of Protection Services, in conversation with students and stakeholders to plan a safe way forward.

Safety and security are human rights that constitute social justice. At the centre of the agenda at the University of the Free State’s (UFS) Social Justice Week held on the Bloemfontein Campus from 17-22 April 2019 were discussions about off-campus safety. Stakeholders agreed on an upgrade to security measures in order to ensure the success and wellbeing of the student population.

A call to students

Prof John Mubangizi, Dean of the Faculty of Law, in his capacity as representative of the UFS Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, expressed his view on institutions of higher learning no longer functioning as ivory towers. “For any initiative to succeed, collaboration is necessary between key roleplayers,” he said.

He aptly pointed out that: “We cannot underscore the importance of safety and security, not only for the university but also for the communities around us. What the university does benefits the community and vice versa. I pledge the university’s commitment to play a leading part to ensure that the collaboration works,” said Prof Mubangizi.

Beefing up security: Who is involved?

In view of the collaborative effort Prof Mubangizi alluded to, the engagement was twofold. First was the roundtable discussion facilitated by Protection Services which then escalated into a public dialogue where students had the opportunity to interact with external delegates.

The South African Police Services, Community Police Forum, Private Security, Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality, Provincial Commissioner, and Deputy Minister of Police were well represented in this critical conversation. Internally, members of Protection Services, Housing and Residence Affairs, Student Affairs, Institute for Social Justice and Reconciliation, Student Representative Council, and the Department of Criminology heard the plight of off-campus safety faced by students.

Changes in the horizon

The discussions culminated with recommendations which will see the future of student safety take a different direction. According to Skhululekile Luwaca, former SRC president, these include “the municipality’s commitment to immediately address issues such as street lights and enforcing by-laws, ensuring an integrated accreditation system, and drafting a policy for off-campus accommodation, running more crime awareness campaigns, and giving police patrols more visibility.”

In addition to resolving to set up a student safety forum with all the stakeholders, the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality has invited the UFS to join Reclaim the City – a safety forum where practical solutions to crime are devised and implemented on a weekly basis.


News Archive

KOVSIE XTRAVAGANZA 2004: Pedro on his way to entertain Kovsies!
2004-09-09

The annual Kovsie Xtravaganza will take place on Tuesday 21 September in the Sand du Plessis Theatre. Once again the best of the Kovsie artists will be show cased in this spectacular of colour, sound and movement. The well known performing artist, Pedro Kruger will act as your host for the evening. 

Some of the Kovsie artists who will be performing, will include: Brilliant Cut, Cantare Student revue group, the UFS Choir, the UFS Choral Choir, KARPOS, Voices Incorporated, Bea vd Vyver, Hanno and Andries (currently ZING finalists), Thabo Hlongwane, Lucy Letsoaka, UFS Gospel Mass Choir and the serenade and talent competition winners. For the first time ever at the Xtravaganza, a live band, Music Incorporated (udo Dieperink Moller), will accompany the soloists. Wayne Flemming will act as the director for the production.

The official residence culture winners will also be announced at this gala event.

Hereby all staff, students and people interested are invited to this centenary spectacular.

Tickets are available from PACOFS (+27 51 447 7772) at R25 per person. For all enquiries, contact Louis Botha (+27 51 401 2819).

 

 

 

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