Medunsa University in the Limpopo province has been declared closed indefinitely following a string of illegal protests on the campus lead by the university’s Student Representative Council (SRC), therefore resulting in an indefinite suspension of all academic programmes at the institution.
The university’s spokesperson, Kgalema Mohuba, issued a statement explaining that the university was to be closed for an unspecified period of time. “University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Mahlo Mokgalong, in consultation with the executive management committee, decided to close Medunsa and dissolve the campus SRC. Therefore, the dissolved campus SRC would not have any legitimacy to represent the students,” he said.
Mohuba further explained that the actions taken are as a result of the actions of the SRC and student body as a whole, who refused to budge apparently when given responses to their list of demands. The Medunsa students have been continuously protesting for about two weeks and have submitted a list of demands and ultimatums to the university’s management. Management have allegedly responded to their demands, but the SRC was not satisfied with their response and rejected it.
“We responded to them a couple of times. As we respond, their demands keep on increasing,” Mohuba said. “Unfortunately, the SRC displayed to be negligent of the laws of the country. Hence they resorted to anarchy and blatant criminality, including the acts of arson,” he added, referring to an incident whereby a student allegedly set the university main gate and a car on fire.
SRC president, Malusi Marakalala, has apparently also expressed intent to perform a student sit-in, whereby they will remain on the Medunsa campus until they are physically removed. “We will try and negotiate so that if the school is closed the students must be given 24 hours to vacate,” Marakalala stated today.
Tensions have been rising at the Medunsa campus and the SRC has organised various demonstrations over the previous two weeks.