MARKO SVICEVIC UP’s Department of Facilities Management, in collaboration with UP’s Department of Residence Affairs and Accommoda...Read more
On 14 November, Student Culture (Stuku) announced that the singing competition between first-year residence students, called Ienkmelodienk, was renamed to Insync. According to a statement released by Stuku on their Facebook page, the name Insync was “derived from the word synchronised, which refers to the synchronised dancing and singing within the competition”. The name is stylised as “1nsync”, with the “1” referring to the first years who participate in the competition. The statement further said that the name Insync reflected the objective of the competition, which is “for the first years to stay in sync with one another and as an added effect – become more in sync (be a part of) the University of Pretoria”.
The UP SRC released an open letter addressed to UP Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Prof Cheryl de la Rey, on 14 November, regarding the possibility of exam deferrals. The letter was written by the SRC “in a desperate attempt to save students who have been negatively affected by the implications of various developments and decisions”, and said that the SRC was attempting to save students in the same way that UP had made a “desperate attempt to save the academic year”. In the letter, the SRC said that for the last 7 weeks UP had substituted contact lectures with a hybrid learning system, and that the transition between the systems had “compromised many students who have to deal with the cultural shock just moments before their examinations”. The SRC said, “In an institution as large as ours, where class inequality is ever so prevalent, the system does violence to those without material conditions for success,” and raised the issues of access to study facilities, internet services, textbooks and online learning material.
Sixteen students were arrested in the early hours of the morning on Monday, 7 November, during a memorial held by UP Fees Must Fall. The memorial was being held in memory of University of Johannesburg (UJ) student Kelvin Baloy, who was shot dead at an end of year party at a private residence, allegedly by a security guard.
The students will be appearing at Pretoria Central Magistrates Court on Tuesday, 8 November at 9:00. UP Fees Must Fall said, "As [UP Fees Must Fall], we demand that the victimsation and malicious arrests of our students stop, and we ask if really everyone is equal before the law. Management together with the SAPS should know that putting us behind bars will not change our ideology and we remain resolute on our call for free decolonised education."
According to a tweet by UP Fees Must Fall, arrested students were separated and taken to the holding cells of different police stations across Pretoria.
The Brooklyn SAPS could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.
On 9 November the Constitutional Tribunal for 2017 was inaugurated at Duxbury Place. Thabo Shingange, interim chairperson of the SRC and chairperson of the Judicial Services Commission in charge of appointing the new tribunal convened the ceremony. Dr Matete Madiba, director of the Department of Student Affairs gave a short welcoming speech. She emphasised that the new Constitutional Tribunal should be humble and smart in the way that they uphold student law at UP. Mia Labuschagne, outgoing Chief Justice of the tribunal, announced the new judges, and swore them in by oath as judges of the Constitutional Tribunal.
The 2016 Society of Tropical Veterinary Medicine (STVM) Norval-Young Award was recently awarded to UP student Luïse Robbertse. The award is presented every two years to one candidate, recognised to be a leading young mind in the field of Tropical Veterinary Medicine. The award ceremony was organised by the Institute for Parasitology and Tropical Veterinary Medicine at the Freie Universität Berlin, Germany.