The #FeesMustFall campaign het hand uitgeruk (got out of hand) yesterday after a varsity building was set alight, and students were warned via WhatsApp.
While the University of Cape Town remains shut out of fear for violent protests, a residence was set alight at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Pietermaritzburg yesterday morning.
Firefighters were on the scene to extinguish the blaze. No injuries have been reported.
Shocked students said they had been woken up by loud banging on their doors and were literally dragged out of bed and “threatened” to protest or else.
A WhatsApp message, sent out to students on Sunday night, read: “Please be warned that if you are seen on campus with a bag or books from Monday to Friday you will be dealt with. We advise you to strike with us or be against us… those who are against will be dealt with.”
UKZN spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said security had been beefed.
Eleven students were arrested during violent clashes with riot police on Thursday at the varsity. They appeared in court on Friday on charges of public violence and remain in custody.
SRC president, Siphelele Nguse, said the students would continue to protest until their peers were released.
“They want us to continue with our fight for free education,” Nguse said.
Meanwhile, the Durban University of Technology suspended classes yesterday following student protests to demand free education.
University spokesman Alan Khan said: “We couldn’t compromise on student’s safety.”