8 January 2019

South Africa: Nehawu Supports Sasco National Shutdown At Unisa

press release

The national union finds it very disheartening that after 25 years since the dawn of democracy students still have to resort to protest in order to have access to education. We share the same sentiments with SASCO and PYA led SRC at UNISA that government has failed students especially those from poor and working class background in dismantling the scourge of academic exclusion, exorbitant academic fees and exacting application processes.

As we celebrate the 107th anniversary of our glorious liberation movement and preparing to canvass for votes in the upcoming National General Elections, the African National Congress [ANC] has an obligation to instruct its government to fully implement without any delay free tertiary education as adopted by NASREC Conference of the ANC and announced in December 2016 by the then State President. Since the announcement that government would from 2018 introduce fully subsidised free higher education and training for poor and working class undergraduate students we noted that nothing tangible has been done in terms of the full implementation of this ANC resolution.

We call on the UNISA management to resolve the impasse with students through the SRC as soon as possible before it compromises the start of the 2019 academic calendar. As NEHAWU, we fully support the demands by SASCO and SASCO led SRC which are as follows:

The national union believes that the demands are genuine and reasonable hence we call upon the management of the university to accede to these demands urgently. NEHAWU members will join the protest by students in a quest to fight exclusion of those who do not have deep pockets to access higher education.

It is important to inform the public that NEHAWU will meet South African Student Congress [SASCO] and Youth Communist League of South Africa [YCLSA] on the 23rd January 2018 to discuss both the Right to Learn Campaign and Joe Slovo Right to Learn Campaign of the respective organisation including the national strike of the union in the TVET and CET Colleges starting on the 13th February 2019. After this meeting NEHAWU will convene a press conference to unveil details of its national strike in this sector including a national plan for the Right to Learn Campaign.

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