THE MOST FROM THE COAST !

..


 Coastweek website


XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

South Africa government call for calm as college violence re-erupts

CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) -- The South African government on Wednesday called for calm as violence re-erupted in some institutions of higher learning over possible fee rises.

The government said it has noted with concern media reports on the resurgence of violent protests in some institutions of higher learning.

Students are advised not to participate in activities that may place them in conflict with the law as they protest against fee increase at universities, said Donald Liphoko, spokesperson for the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).

"As government, we would like to assure South Africans that the matter of student fees is receiving our full attention. We are working together with all parties concerned to find a lasting solution," said Liphoko.

"Destruction of property and violence during this process cannot be tolerated.

"Government calls on students to allow the ongoing consultation to be concluded peacefully.

"We call on student leadership to join the call for the protection of valuable university infrastructure," he added.

Liphoko said the government understands the difficult circumstances faced by many students in the country, and "is doing everything in its power to resolve the situation and will soon make an announcement on the matter of student fees".

President Jacob Zuma has instructed Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan as well as Minister of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande to find money for another zero-percent fee increase for 2017.

Last month, the National Treasury told the Fees Commission of Inquiry, looking into the feasibility of free tertiary education, that a zero-percent fee increment for 2017 was not budgeted for.

The Council on Higher Education has proposed that institutions increase their fees by six percent for the 2017 academic year.

Students have threatened to disrupt institutions of higher learning if their demand for zero fee increase is not met.

Nzimande has warned that zero fee increases would force universities to downsize or shut down certain programs.

South African universities were hit by widespread protests over fee increases last year.

According to the DHET, the unrest cost more than 145 million rand (about 10.8 million US dollars) in damage.
.

UPDATE:

South African education minister warns against violence during student protests

JOHANNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua) -- South African Minister of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande on Wednesday called for punitive measures against perpetrators of violence during student protests.

The minister called on all relevant arms of the state to redouble their efforts to track down, prosecute and jail the small band of criminals working to destroy the country’s education infrastructure.

The minister was reacting to the burning of the main examination hall at the Pietermaritzburg campus of the University KwaZulu-Natal, as well as the reported torching of a truck belonging to the University of Zululand this week during student protests against possible fee rises.

"There can never be a rational justification for the destruction of assets that we as a country need to empower the next generation so that they can play their full role in building the South African economy," Nzimande said.

He called on police, prosecutors and other responsible state institutions to "track down this criminal minority and put an end to their barbaric behaviour."

"Communities, parents, students, and staff must also mobilize in protection of the country’s learning and teaching facilities," he said.

Student protests re-erupted over the past few days amid reports that institutions of higher learning would increase tuition fees by six percent as proposed by the Council on Higher Education.

Students have threatened to disrupt institutions of higher learning if their demand for zero fee increase is not met.

Earlier, Nzimande warned that zero fee increases would force universities to downsize or shut down certain programs.

South African universities were hit by widespread protests over fee increases last year.

According to official figures, the unrest cost more than 145 million rand (about 10.8 million U.S. dollars) in damage.

Following the unrest, President Jacob Zuma appointed a commission to look into the students’ concerns.

The government then suspended fee increases for 2016 and provided universities with billions of rand for the shortfall.

Last month, Zuma instructed Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, as well as Nzimande to find money for another zero-percent fee increase for 2017.

The National Treasury has told the Fees Commission of Inquiry, looking into the feasibility of free tertiary education, that a zero-percent fee increment for 2017 was not budgeted for.
.

South Africa ruling party condemns vandalism during student violence

JOHANNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua) -- South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) on Wednesday condemned the destruction of university property and the intimidation and harassment of university leaders as part of student activism over free university education.

The burning of books and university infrastructure "is reprehensible and has no connection to the calls for free education for the poor", the ANC said as violence re-erupted in some institutions of higher learning over possible fee rises in the country.

Calling the move "a symbolic act of anti-intellectualism", the party said attacking university property and harassing university leaders "is illegal and a crime".

The ANC calls on students and staff at all universities to reject violence and to ensure the Fee Commission completes its work timeously, said Naledi Pandor, Chairperson of the Sub-Committee on Education and Health under the ANC’s National Executive Committee (NEC).

"We call on university authorities to be vigilant and call on students to protest lawfully and to direct their activism through appropriate university and political structures," Pandor said.

"We urge the government to determine a solution that ensures those who can afford to pay fees do so and those who do not have the financial means are supported by state resources," she added.

Also on Wednesday, the government voiced concern over media reports on the resurgence of violent protests in some institutions of higher learning.

"As government, we would like to assure South Africans that the matter of student fees is receiving our full attention.

"We are working together with all parties concerned to find a lasting solution," said Donald Liphoko, spokesperson for the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).

President Jacob Zuma has instructed finance minister as well as higher education minister to find money for another zero-percent fee increase for 2017.

Last month, the National Treasury told the Fee Commission of Inquiry, looking into the feasibility of free tertiary education, that a zero-percent fee increment for 2017 was not budgeted for.

The Council on Higher Education has proposed that institutions increase their fees by six percent for the 2017 academic year.

Students, however, have threatened to disrupt institutions of higher learning if their demand for zero fee increase is not met.
.

EARLIER REPORTS:

South African parliament endorses new Public Protector

CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) -- South Africa’s National Assembly on Wednesday endorsed Busisiwe Mkhwebane as the new Public Protector to succeed Thuli Madonsela, whose seven-year non-renewable term expires in October.

The decision of the House will be sent to President Jacob Zuma for ratification.

Mkhwebane won over the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and the majority of parties in Parliament during the parliamentary ad hoc committee interviews.

Being independent of the government, the Public Protector is tasked with the investigation of misconduct in any state affairs and all spheres of government, including that of public administration in the country.
.

South Africa economy not safe from recession despite Q2 growth

JOHANNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua) -- South Africa is still not safe from junk status or recession despite recording a 3.3 percent increase in its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the second quarter of 2016, an economist said on Wednesday.

Richard Downing, chief economist with the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI), told Xinhua that the growth was above expectations but conclusions could not be drawn from quarterly figures.

The 3.3-percent quarter-on-quarter growth was above the 2.7 percent that had been expected by most economists.

Downing said, "We are still not out of the woods, but still there in the grass and it’s not clear where we are going to. We cannot make conclusions basing on quarterly figures but needs a longer period. The SA Reserve Bank (SARB) said we will have no growth this year but we might get slight growth at the end of the year."

Statistics South Africa announced on Tuesday that the growth was mainly driven by mining and quarrying and manufacturing sectors.

This was the first time since the last quarter of 2014 that the GDP has grown by more than two percent.

The year on year growth in the second quarter of 2016 is 0.6 percent. The GDP have grown by 0.3 percent for the first six months of this year.

Downing said South Africa needs to increase investment and achieve more economic growth.

"We need to increase the investment levels to achieve a growth rate.

"The public sector is supposed to ensure that the environment is suitable for growth by providing infrastructure.

"They have to enhance the social, political and economic growth.

"The private sector has to provide investment and move the economy forward, create employment and increase the tax base," he said.

South Africa’s business confidence is low and there is a need for the Treasury and SARB to work on that, Downing said.

The public spat between the Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and the country’s elite police, the Hawks, is not good for the country, he said.

There have been fears that Gordhan might be arrested by the Hawks for some alleged misdeeds committed when he was in charge of the country’s tax authority, the South African Revenue Service.

Downing said, "The Treasury is a sensitive area as it plays an important role in the country.

"The same as the SARB. There should not be uncertainty in these areas. There have to be stability to support growth."
.

South Africa’s ruling party urges radical measures to lower crime levels

CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) -- The ruling African National Congress (ANC) has called for radical and drastic measures required to bring down the unacceptably high levels of crime in South Africa.

The government must act urgently on the remedial action to deal with the defects in the law-enforcement system that are allowing criminals to go unpunished, the ANC said.

The party issued the statement following the release of crime statistics in Parliament.

According to the statistics presented by Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko, South Africa saw a 4.9 percent increase in murder for 2015/16, compared to the previous financial year.

This means that around 51 people were murdered every day in South Africa, up from 49 in 2014/15.

Meanwhile, attempted murder increased by 3.4 percent, with 49 cases on average reported every day.

Aggravated robbery increased by 2.7 percent with 363 incidences every day on average, while robbery at residential premises increased by 2.7 percent, with 57 houses on average broken into every day.

Car hijackings increased by 14.3 percent, with 40 hijackings taking place every day on average.

"We appreciate the candor and frankness with which the SAPS (South African Police Service) have highlighted the challenges faced by law-enforcement in bringing down crime, which is fundamentally tied to strengthening the social fabric in our communities," ANC national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said.

"It is only through collaboration and cooperation between the different arms of law-enforcement that we will be able to bring down crime levels; and stability within the Security Cluster is essential if the coordinated cluster-based approach to fighting crime is to yield success required," Kodwa said.

He also said the ANC welcomed the announcement that there has been a general decrease in incidents of crime.

"We are particularly pleased that during 2015/2016 the numbers of sex crimes, including sexual assault and rape, have decreased. This is a welcome trend that the ANC hopes will continue," he said.

Whilst the ANC welcomes progress made by the SAPS in bringing down levels of certain types of crime—the increase in contact crimes is worrying, said Kodwa.

The ANC further concurs with the sentiment expressed by Nhleko that fighting crime is everyone’s responsibility, and not just that of the SAPS.

"Clearly, together there is much more we still need to be do to realize our common objective of safer communities, safer cities and a safer country," Kodwa said.

 

             

 

Remember: you read it first at coastweek.com !


 Voyager Beach Resort banner | Coastweek

 

TO ADVERTISE ON THIS WEB SITE:  www.coastweek.com
Please contact

MOMBASA - GULSHAN JIVRAJ, Mobile: 0722 775164 Tel: (+254) (41) 2230130 /
Wireless: 020 3549187 e-mail: info@coastweek.com

NAIROBI - ANJUM H. ASODIA, Mobile: 0733 775446 Tel: (+254) (020) 3744459
e-mail: anjum@asodia.co.ke

 
    © Coastweek Newspapers Limited               Tel: (+254) (41) 2230130  |  Wireless: 020 3549187  |  E-mail: info@coastweek.com