Students occupy campuses at King Sabatha Dalindyebo technical college

Exams postponed as college closes

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Photo of closed gates of college
The Mapuzi campus of the King Sabatha Dalindyebo technical college was closed today as student protests continued. Photo: supplied

Four campuses at King Sabatha Dalindyebo technical and vocational training college were closed today as a student occupation entered its second week.

The occupation started Monday 29 August at Ngcobo, Mngazi and Mapuzi campuses while at Ntabozuko Campus in Elliotdale the occupation started last Thursday.

Students are demanding transport allowances of between R11,000 and R15,000 a year, as well as computers; and improvements to buildings. Some students are also complaining that they have still not received their certificates from 2013 and 2015 or their 2015 exam results.

Ntabozuko Student Representative Council (SRC) Chairperson Phakama Nana said at her campus students were demanding a transport allowance of R15,000 for the year. She said they had tried several times to meet management about the allowance money but only when they started protesting had management agreed to meet.

College spokesperson Zigqibo Khala did not answer questions GroundUp sent last Thursday and could not be reached on the telephone.

All-day meetings on Monday between management and student leaders from all protesting campuses except Mapuzi ended in failure after management said there was only R2.3 million on college account and it was not enough for all student allowances.

Nana said there was also no solution to students’ other grievances either.

Student leader from Ngcobo Campus Akhona Bavu said since January students had asked management to install computers on their campus. He said they were using an old high school computer. Students were also demanding allowances of R11,000.

“We are not going back to classes until they install computers and fix these classrooms. We gave them up to Thursday to fix everything,” he said.

“Yesterday we had a meeting with the management. They told us they only have R2.3m and they are going to give to a certain percentage of students and other students will have to wait until NSFAS (National Student Financial Aid Scheme) sends other money, which we refused. We want the money to be divided among all students,” he said.

Mapuzi campus SRC chairperson Liso Nqoloba said there were students who graduated in 2013 and 2015 but had never received their Tourism and Hospitality certificates.

Nqoloba said students also wanted management to organise practical exams for both courses.

“Exams were supposed to start last Monday and next month we are writing finals and we are still not clear on what is happening. Management does not want to come to us.”

TOPICS:  Tertiary Education

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