Formal lectures and scheduled tests at the Central University of Technology’s (CUT) Bloemfontein and Welkom campuses have been suspended as of today. CUT spokesperson, Dan Maritz, says this will enable students to prepare thoroughly for the end of the year exams scheduled to start on November 7. This comes after disruptions of tests and lectures on both campuses as well of the victimisation of staff and students that continued this week. Some buildings at the Bloemfontein Campus were damaged by protesters using petrol bombs. The cafeteria area at the Welkom Campus was also raided. Maritz says faculties will, however, engage with all students and indicate the way forward to ensure that academic programmes are completed. According to him, management remains determined to complete the academic year. No student will be deprived as a result of the alternative arrangements that have been put in place.
He says academic staff will engage with students via the university’s digital platform e-Thutho, Blackboard and electronic and social media. This is to ensure the syllabi are completed before the exams commence. Undergraduate students who do not have access to computer facilities or the internet off campus will be able to make use of academic support centers, the library and computer labs with WiFi facilities which are open to students. According to Maritz management will continue to engage with student leaders in a way forward and is considering demands by students in relation to the #FeesMustFall campaign. The situation on the campuses are calm today. – Christal-Lize Muller