#SaveSMUAcademicYear – Students shutdown Sefako Makgatho University [LATEST NEWS]

SMU Students Shut Down Campus To Save Academic Year

“Sefako Makgatho University (SMU) students have taken to burning tires and blocking entrances in efforts to have their concerns about the academic year be heard. This morning saw reports of students wanting the campus to shut down the surface with #SaveSMUAcademicYear.”

Sefako Makgatho University (SMU) students took to extreme measures to have their voices heard. With burning tyres, blocking off-campus entrances, and shutting down the campus, students ate hoping to reach management to plead with them to save the academic year.

Students feel frustrated and that the University has failed them and their education during Covid-19. Promises to supply students with data and devices are said to not have been fulfilled by the University as well as kicking off the online education plan successfully.

One SMU student says, “It’s been 4 months since our school did any type of learning, some course only had a one-semester test written. We have very ignorant management. They keep sending us empty promises with nothing to show for them”.

The morning of 20 July saw students try to stop those who work at the University from entering or leaving by putting wood on the ground, burning tires, and putting placards on the fence. Students have said that this will be done until the University’s management took students and their frustrations more seriously.

A statement that students have said was that Sefako is a Health Sciences University which seeks to train doctors and nurses but during a time where those services are urgently needed, they fail to provide for students.

Pretoria News reported that Lereto Mokheranyana, who is the President of the Student Representative Council has said that after numerous unkept promises, it has become clear to students that management has been playing with their future.

This is reportedly not the first time students have engaged in this behaviour in efforts to have issues with online teaching and learning be dealt with. The University is said to have postponed the online learning programme first to 11 May then 1 June. However, the University has, on 20 July, still not delivered.

With the issue of laptops for students, Mokheranyana says that SMU has been postponing this since the first date which was April. Of the 6000 students the University has, students have said that not a single laptop has been delivered. When asking whether the University has laptops, management answered a student by simply saying, “we don’t have laptops”.

The SRC President states, “What perpetuates this issue is that there would be no communication between the university and students, and there is no accountability on the side of management.”

Police have arrived at the scene but students have not surrendered.

#SaveSMUAcademicYear Students at Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University have shut down the university’s entrance with burning tires.

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