Three campuses of the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) in South Africa have been closed down due to violent clashed between students and the police.
The students have been protesting for over week over the slashing of funding for poorer students.
On Thursday the University attempted to gain a court order to prevent further protests from taking place.
They claimed that students were:
“Threatening to burn down buildings, followed by the management if their demands were not met”
A University spokesperson has said that:
“They want to stay free, eat free, and travel for free, and they want some change. They are holding the administration to ransom”.
Following a breakdown in negotiations, the students started boycotting classes, intimidating staff, barricading entrances, burning piles of tyres, stoning buildings, and throwing petrol bombs.
Students armed with stones and sticks locked the main campus gates, and bombarded the police with stones and petrol bombs. The police used water cannons and rubber bullets to regain control of the campus.
A student leader commented that:
“The management of TUT has been giving us the run-around. We tabled our grievances last semester and we were promised change. We have exhausted all avenues and will strike until management addresses our grievances”
Heavily armed police remain on campus.