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  • Strikes and Protests 2007/8 - Students

  • Students continue Bulawayo demonstrations
    Students Solidarity Trust
    February 01, 2007

    Following student protests in Bulawayo on the 17th of January 2007, which saw the arrest of the ZINASU President, Promise Mkwananzi and 9 other student activists, students at the institutions of higher learning in Bulawayo took to the streets again on the 1st of February 2007 and have continued to engage the government through street protests after failing to get an ear on the negotiating table. Student leaders from the National University of Science and Technology, NUST, have made pilgrimage to Harare, twice in January alone seeking audience with the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Mr. Mbizvo, but without any success.

    The police arrested 20 students after dispersing protestors, who included, Augustine Mate of the Hillside Teachers College Students Representative Council, Prince Dove, Admire Zaya, Mpilo Dube and Polite Makaza, together with about 20 other non-students who were caught in the indiscriminate and arbitrary web of police arrests. The students are demanding the abolition of the fee structure that was imposed by the government last year, and a return to the grant system. The fee structure, whose figures were revised upwards at the beginning of the year, now demands about a Million dollars, ZW$500,000 or USD$ 2000.00 as fees from students, a figure that is way beyond the reach of most Zimbabweans, who can barely get by on meager salaries that are eroded by inflation before they are logged with the banks.

    The students mother body, ZINASU, has already categorically stated that they have located their struggles within the SAVE Zimbabwe campaign a campaign that involves all pro-democracy movements. To that the end the protesting were also protesting on the following issues: -

    • No life Presidency disguised as harmonization of elections
    • An end to water cuts
    • An end to electricity cuts
    • Living wages for teachers, and all civil servants especially those currently on strike.

    The Students Solidarity Trust contends that the continued systematic harassment of student activists making a legitimate and just claim for their democratic rights is a feeble attempt by a cornered regime to stifle free discourse, which is aimed at expressing discontent against the failing regime. It is such type of recalcitrant behavior by the state security apparatus that has soiled the image of the country that Harare would so much want to repair.

    Visit the Students Solidarity Trust fact sheet

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