ON THE CARDS: Students may start fresh protests

Universities could be in for another rough ride this year.

The South African Union of Students (SAUS) yesterday hinted at another series of mass protests after making its presentation to the Commission of Inquiry into Higher Education and Training, chaired by Justice Jonathan Arthur Heher in Tshwane.

“We are very disappointed by the slow pace of the commission and the arrogance portrayed by Judge Heher,” SAUS secretary-general Sthembiso Ndlovu said.

“They have told us that for the past six months, they have been dealing with logistics. As a union, we are now going to travel the length and breadth of this country, interacting with our students in mass meetings at institutions of higher learning. We will be reporting on what happened here today.

“If students say: ‘Let us go and study at the Union Buildings, or let us go and study at Parliament’ - who are we to defy the mandate given to us by the students? We are very disappointed.

The SAUS was the first to make submissions to the commission of inquiry into the burning issue of higher education funding. At the end of their submissions, the student leaders were upset because the inquiry had no questions for them.

It follows last year’s countrywide protests over the cost of higher education, which saw universities shut down and students storming parliament.

This led President Jacob Zuma to announce a zero percent fee hike for the 2016 academic year.