MARKO SVICEVIC UP’s Department of Facilities Management, in collaboration with UP’s Department of Residence Affairs and Accommoda...Read more
On 31 March, the Western Cape High Court ruled that it was an infringement to ban the use of marijuana by adults in private homes. The ruling allows for the cultivation, use, and possession of marijuana, and the court has given Parliament 24 months to amend portions of the Drug Trafficking Act and the Medicines Control Act.
Frederick Malan, a final-year PhD student in the Department of Chemistry, has been selected to attend the 67th Nobel Laureate meeting in Lindau, Germany. The meeting this year will focus on chemistry. Malan is one of five postgraduate students in South Africa who will attend the meeting.
Malan will be completing his PhD degree this year. His project involves research on the catalytic applications of CpMetal N-heterocyclic carbine complexes.
On 18 March, the Higher Education Convention, organised by former Constitutional Court Deputy Chief and mediator at the meeting, Justice Dikgang Moseneke, took place at the Eskom Academy of Learning in Midrand. The convention was however cancelled after students who were allegedly aligned with the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) refused to give Minister of Higher Education and Training, Blade Nzimande, an opportunity to give his speech. Some students objected to the presence of Nzimande who, according to SABC News, was heckled by students upon entering the venue.
The two-day convention focused on the challenges that tertiary institutions are facing, such as the demand for free decolonised higher education. The gathering was attended by students, academic staff (including university vice-chancellors), politicians, and businesses who were anticipated to make proposals on the government's plan for the education sector.
On 25 March, TuksRAG hosted the Rag of Hope Day Benefit Concert at the Rag Farm. The concert aimed to raise funds to assist student with food hampers and fees, but also to bring students together to celebrate different talents in the community. The event boasted names such as Matthew Mole, Desmond and the Tutus, Cassper Nyovest, and Pretoria’s own A-Reece.
The evening started off with a performance by Desmond and the Tutus to a small crowd. The small audience was treated to lead singer Shane Durrant joining the crowd and sitting with them on the grass as he performed. This was followed by indie-folk band Sutherland performing original songs and covers.
HENRI UYS AND POOJA PUNDIT
On 2 March, the TSC and UP management met to discuss accommodation issues.
Sisana Machi, Director of Residence Affairs and Accommodation, announced resident placement problems. Machi said that almost all of UP’s residences are full, excluding the most costly residence, Hatfield Studios. She reported that these residences consist of between 62% and 68% black students. Citing reasons such as location and catering for specific programmes, Machi stated that of the residences, two consist of mainly black students. Machi concluded that the University’s residence placement policy is under review and that the updated policy will be implemented from 2018. Acting Vice-Principal, Prof. Carolina Koornhof, said that the new policy will prioritise students funded by NSFAS, first year students coming from quintile 1, 2 and 3 schools, and students relying on SASSA grants.