The University of the Western Cape has obtained a court order preventing a group of protesting workers and about 50 students supporting their cause from disrupting campus operations, its executive management said on Wednesday.
“The court order authorises and directs the police to intervene and assist the university. [It] has been served, read and explained to the protesting group,” they said in a statement.
Workers and students have been protesting the outsourcing of workers at the university since last week.
Incidents of class disruptions and staff intimidation have been reported.
On Tuesday, the university agreed to a meeting with the protesting group on Thursday.
But despite this commitment, protests on campus continued on Wednesday.
“Today, the workers and some students congregated in front of the Administration Building and proceeded to the rest of the campus. We have confirmed reports of classes being disrupted, vandalism and damage to the university property,” the executive said.
“As a result of these actions by the protesting group, they were engaged by the police and security with some resulting skirmishes.”
Insourcing and the university’s “inability to meet this demand at this stage has been part of our engagements since last year”.
The executive said it had responded to memorandums of demand from students and workers last week.
The rector also met with a delegation of protesting workers, where he explained that the institution’s finances were constrained and could not accommodate the workers’ demands “without putting the financial viability of the university at risk”.[Source: News24]