The university fees mess isn’t a matter that must be resolved by the government or by the Department of Higher Education and Training alone, South Africans must all work together to fix the mess, says President Zuma. We can not leave everything for the government to fix for us.
His Excellency is concerned and really worried about the violence that erupted over the 2017 fees. He reminded South Africans that education is such issue that concerns all, as he pleaded for help towards finding solutions to the issue.
The President charged university managements, stake holders, students, parents and guardians to cooperate with Minister Nzimande and combat the challenge of student funding and access.
“It is not a matter that must be resolved by government alone, or by the Department of Higher Education and Training. We must all work together to find solutions to the higher education access challenge. From parents, business community, labor, religious leaders, traditional leaders, trade unions, political parties and communities in general, let us find solutions together,” Zuma begged.
President Zuma said that it’s uncool to think the government doesn’t care and wailed that the funding base for higher education is on a steady increase.
“Government cares and will continue to search for ways of making access to higher education easier for students,” he said. But then remarked that “the funding base for higher education students has been expanding considerably over the years,” added Mr. President.
Above all, President Zuma asked the students to explore peaceful avenues to demonstrate their dissatisfaction. He warned that unlawful protests would be punished. He urged them not to destroy state properties because it is not going to do anyone any good.
In his words, “We urge the students to explore peaceful avenues to engage on this issue constructively. The destruction of property is a criminal offense and will be treated as such by the law enforcement authorities.
We have directed the police to ensure that all such cases reach the courts and that those responsible answer for their actions.
This infrastructure must be available for use by generations to come, and students should respect university property as leaders of the future,” he cautioned.