The Minister’s attitude and comments towards the on-going protests are indicative of a broader culture in Higher Education of undermining the genuine concerns of students and other stakeholders. It is broadly indicative of a leadership crisis in the sector: individuals who only exist to deflect and play victim rather than tackle the crisis in higher education. Nzimande’s unimaginative attempt to make light of the situation does not take away from the fact that students are left without any prospects under his less than desirable leadership approach since 2015. This Lumpen needs to think long and hard about his competency to continue as the minister if he still holds any iota of revolutionary morality.
The minister has a simple role to provide Political Guidance and Oversight to a critical sector which is higher education, his tactic to opt to insult students instead of providing lasting solutions are rather unfortunate and only confirm the leadership vacuum and anti-poor Lumpens we are faced with in Higher education.
Nzimande is no different from the backward and incompetent Vice Chancellors who at all the times when there are challenges within institutions of Higher Learning which they lead, opt to use Private Security and the thugs which parade as SAPS to attack and intimidate peaceful students. We wish to warn them too that they must desist from using state institutions to silence genuine calls raised by students yet fail dismally to curb the rampant corruption in their institutions and the department.
We have noted the cabinet statement which is nothing but another commitment that can be likened to a Kiss & Hug scenario, we wish to reiterate that we stand by our call that we want solutions not empty commitments from Government and Institutions. We want to see action not lip service.
As the South African Students Congress, working with all progressive forces we will be meeting Vice Chancellor’s to attempt to bring about stability and that can only happen when we see action which shall bring about the true change and giving Access to the Children of the Poor and Working Class.
We hope the African National Congress over its ordinary National Executive Committee meeting this weekend will be bold enough to place the Poor and marginalised African majority above all and declare action in solving the current students funding quagmire.
Issued by SASCO.
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