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Student protest against integration of the Main Campus residences
2008-02-21

The management of the University of the Free State (UFS) is extremely concerned about the actions of some of our students who have committed public violence, crimen injuria and damage to property last night (Wednesday, 20 February 2008) on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein.

The management condemns these criminal acts in the strongest terms. We are concerned about what appears to be an orchestrated campaign to frustrate the implementation of the new residence policy on diversity.

We remain committed to ensuring a safe campus for staff and students to engage in the academic activities of the UFS and will take the necessary legal steps to avoid a repeat of these incidents.

Normal academic and other activities are continuing and have not been disrupted. We are appealing to all staff and students to remain calm.

We note the contents of a memorandum that was handed to the management regarding the integration of our student residences.

We remain committed to the implementation of the Council approved policy on increasing diversity in our residences as part of a new institutional culture for the UFS.

We also remain committed to engaging with students on these and other matters. In fact, several meetings have taken place over the past few weeks with the Student Representative Council (SRC) and with primes about student issues.

We would like to appeal to student leaders to follow the established channels to address their concerns.

These channels have been successful in the past in addressing student concerns and we see no reason why they cannot succeed in the current situation.

The management will meet with student leaders as soon as is possible to engage with students on these matters.

However we want to reiterate that criminal behaviour and misconduct will not be tolerated.

Media Release
Issued by: Anton Fisher
Director: Strategic Communication
Tel: 051 401 3422
Cell: 072 207 8334
E-mail: fishera.stg@ufs.ac.za  
21 February 2008
 

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