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CASSPIR, WATER CANON USED ON PROTESTING VOCTIM STUDENTS

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MATSAPHA – Police quashed what could have been a violent scenario when VOCTIM students allegedly set alight an open veld at the institution while protesting.


The police were compelled to use a Casspir and a water cannon to disperse the demonstrating students yesterday.
The incident took place at Gwamile Vocational and Commercial Training Institute (VOCTIM) yesterday afternoon.


During the clash, some students were allegedly assaulted with batons by the police from their hostel to the institution’s gate and the Casspir and water canon were used to drive them away from the establishment towards the University of Swaziland (UNISWA), Kwaluseni Campus. The students, who were organised under the banner of the Swaziland National Union of Students (SNUS), boycotted classes yesterday and demonstrated inside the institution premises.


Their main grievance was that last Thursday, government-sponsored students were sent home by the administration to ask for E6 000 examination fee. Apparently, government had not paid this fee.


It is worth noting that this was the first academic year government sponsored the institution’s students.
The students argued that the agreement form they signed when they were granted the scholarship stipulated that government would pay everything, including the examination fees.


They said their parents could not raise so much money within such a short space of time since the deadline for paying the examination fee was March 30, 2017.


Furthermore, the students complained about the institution’s boarding master.
They alleged that he imposed high fines on them should they be found to have committed an offence. For example, one of the students said they were once fined E1 500 for coming back to their hostel late and drunk, yet they were not carrying alcohol.

 

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: Scholarship recovery
Do you think the Ministry of Labour and Social Security is ready to take over the scholarship recovery project?