The South African Student Congress (Sasco) has lambasted the Economic Freedom Fighters Student Command (EFFSC) for planning to instigate an unruly violence in more tertiary institutions.
This comes after the EFFSC proposed to stage a national shutdown in Tshwane on Monday in a bid to show off their anger about the proposed fee hike in South African universities.
Speaking at a media briefing on Wednesday, the youth wing of the Malema-led party said: “Our proposal is that we shut down workplaces. When we engage learners, our proposal would be to shut down schools. Even if we engage tellers, then our proposal would be to shut down banks to intensify protests.”
But Sasco said that the student federation will support EFFSC’s calls for free education, but will vehemently stand against the command causing chaos in Tshwane.
“The whole question of free education really has to go where it is and that is the state and the private sector. So really, you are going to shut down Pretoria and achieve what intention, except to make newspaper headlines?” Sasco president Thabo Moloja asked the EFFSC.
Reacting also, Sasco secretary general Tembani Makata promised to keep an eye on tertiary institutions across the country. He promised that Sasco will henceforth protect institutions from the claws of EFF Student Command.
According to Makata, most young people in red shirts were hired to ruin tertiary institutions in the cause of the protests. He revealed that “the majority of those people mobilized, who are wearing red T-shirts, are not even students of an institution.”
Meanwhile, the Economic Freedom Fighters Student Command leader Mpho Morolane expressed shock at Sasco’s blame game. He stated his readiness to confront Sasco if the congress lays further blame on the command.
“If they want to take action we will await any action. We are prepared. It is shocking they are trivializing the general students’ cause to only one student population. They have run out of ideas,” he lashed out.
Universities nationwide are currently rocked by violent protests. This year’s #FeesMustFall protest was ignited by Higher Education Department’s 19 September announcement – that Universities must determine their own tuition rates for 2017, with increases capped at 8%.