However, the crowds had quickly dispersed when the police arrived and a confrontation was fortunately avoided, Metro police spokesperson Parboo Sewpersad said.
Sewpersad said police were dispatched to DUT where students were protesting and to eThekwini College in Springfield Park where students had blocked the road with burning tyres and rubble on Tuesday. He said students had already dispersed from the M19 when police arrived.
“At DUT students were protesting and they went back inside,” he said.
Protesting DUT students can be seen in this video that has been circulating on What’s App. However, it remains unclear why some students who appear to be wearing ANC and EFF t-shirts are seen chasing and hitting each other with long sticks during the protest.
However, DUT Student Representative Council president Zabelo Ntuli downplayed the protests saying students were “expressing their dissatisfaction”.
Ntuli said between 200 to 300 students were disgruntled after the university apparently advised them that once they had completed a higher certificate course with an aggregate of 60% they would be admitted to register to study towards a national diploma. However, he alleged that the university had reneged on this agreement.
“They promised they were going to be absorbed and then all of a sudden the university has changed and said they must meet the minimum requirements of a matric. Hence they have gathered here to raise their dissatisfaction,” he said.
Ntuli added that the SRC was also concerned that out of 9000 first year students just 700 had registered so far and registration closes on Friday.
He said the university had advised students that the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) had not provided it with a list of students who qualified for NSFAS funding and this had held up the registration process.
“We have met with management and written a memorandum of demands to management and they have responded in a very arrogant manner,” Ntuli said.
Approached for comment this morning, DUT management advised that it will be issuing a statement during the course of today.