Image via SAPS
Image via SAPS
A faction of students from the Nelson Mandela University (NMU) in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, has rendered the north and south campuses inoperable on Monday.
The Port Elizabeth police, in a statement, confirmed that NMU campuses are closed due to the ongoing student protests.
#sapsEC Nelson Mandela University is closed. All entrances are blocked with branches, denying any acces to the premises. #SAPS maintaining #PoliceVisibility with POP Unit and SAPS Humewood members deployed to monitor the situation. ME— SA Police Service (@SAPoliceService) February 17, 2020
At this time, the public order police unit has maintained visibility in the areas affected by the demonstration and have not interfered with protesters blocking campus entrances and denying access to all vehicles.
The video you will see below displays how the protesters have been using intimidation tactics to scare students and campus staff away from the campus with the ultimatum, “join us or stand aside but nobody is entering the premises today.”
Just jump down and join us he said ??? welcome to NMU protests! pic.twitter.com/2tY8PRHhG0— ? (@ktnadvocate) February 17, 2020
NMU issued a statement on social media notifying students and staff members of the protests taking place outside the north and south campuses.
The institution claims to have not received any information from the protesters on why they have picketed at the entrances on Monday.
“The University is trying to ascertain the reasons for the blockade & will communicate updates,” the statement read.
Access to North & South Campus has been blocked. Students & staff are encouraged to liaise with their lecturers & line managers, respectively, for alternative learning &work methods. The University is trying to ascertain the reasons for the blockade & will communicate updates.— Mandela University (@MandelaUni) February 17, 2020
However, according to observers on the ground, it is believed that the protests are linked to the registration process.
Although a memorandum of demands has yet to be furnished by the protesting students, it is believed that at the top of the list is free registration, as well as relaxed accommodation prerequisites.
This is a developing story.