Intervarsity News 18 September 2017

Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT)

On 11 September an arson attack was reported on CPUT’s Cape Town campus. CPUT spokesperson Lauren Kansley told EWN that, “campuses remain open and operational despite an attack on a design building in Cape Town during the early hours of the morning.

We believe petrol bombs were used to set fire to a number of classrooms but private security and the fire department managed to get the situation under control before the fire could do more damage.”

This comes after students protested over accommodation, forcing CPUT to close its Cape Town campus.

 

University of Cape Town (UCT)

UCT has allegedly begun talks with a union representing workers at the institution in an attempt to avoid a shutdown of the university.

On 6 September UCT’s vice-chancellor and principal, Max Price, said that if the institution were to shut down it would cost the institution close to R500 million. According to the South African Liberated Public Sector Workers Union (SALPSWU), the workers it represents are unhappy with working hours and the way their retirement fund saving structure is set up.

 

University of Johannesburg (UJ)

The National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (NEHAWU) is calling for UJ to press criminal charges against Prof. Roy Marcus, the university’s council chairperson, and Jaco van Schoor, deputy vice-chancellor of finance, for allegedly embezzling R25 million.

The pair has been suspended from UJ while an investigation has been launched. In July, IOL reported that Marcus and van Schoor personally benefitted from some contracts to install solar geysers by using UJ affiliated companies. The NEHAWU spokesperson, Khaya Xaba, compared the case to the Walter Sisulu University student, who mistakenly received R14 million from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), and told Sunday Times that the union was “astounded” at how the two cases were handled so differently. Xaba continued to say that the R25 million could have been used to assist deserving students and avoid another onset of student protests.

 

University of Kwa-Zulu Natal (UKZN)

Last month UKZN revealed that at least 200 staff members could be linked to an elaborate admissions scam at the Nelson Mandela School of Medicine.

According to IOL, three individuals were arrested and accused of working with a UKZN syndicate to enrol students in the medical school illegally. Dr. Albert van Jaarsveld, UKZN’s vice-chancellor and principal, told IOL that at least 363 electronic devices were seized from staff suspected of being involved in the scam. Van Jaarsveld also confirmed that an investigation is still ongoing. 

 

Compiled by Chad Johnston

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