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UCT, SRC reach agreement on fee block issues amid student protests


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UCT, SRC reach agreement on fee block issues amid student protests


17th March 2023

By: News24Wire


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University of Cape Town (UCT) management and the student representative council (SRC) have resolved fee block issues after two mediation sessions this week.

The agreement, reached on Wednesday, comes amid protests against financial exclusions, student assessments, and accommodation issues, which the parties have yet to agree on. 


A fee block is when a student is blocked from returning to their studies because of outstanding fees.

Under the agreement, which came into effect on Wednesday, UCT management would "conduct a review in respect of its fee policy, with specific reference to the application of a 'fee block' on the grounds of the financial means of the university and the needs of each student, the socio-economic conditions affecting each student, the academic performance of each student, and so forth".


The agreement over the fee block applies to academically eligible students registered last year and excludes international students due to visa restrictions. 

External mediators Ashraf Mahomed and Akha Tutu, an SRC representative, facilitated the process. 

Interim vice-chancellor, Emeritus Professor Daya Reddy, said UCT worked around the clock to address the issues timeously to ensure the continuity of academic programmes.

Reddy pledged to work with the SRC to resolve student challenges. 

UCT said the management and the SRC would also engage with the Department of Higher Education and Training and the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) to resolve the R45 000 "fee cap", which was exacerbating the financial aid crisis.

SRC president Hlengiwe Lisa Dube welcomed the agreement.

"The SRC will continue to advocate for students of this institution. We are pleased that management addressed some of the pressing issues. We vowed no student will be left behind, and as we continue to fight the bigger fight of fee blocks, let us acknowledge the efforts and accomplishments made thus far," said Dube. 


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