'Government hasn’t engaged the students'

Professor Steven Friedman addressed the student’s movement #FessMustFall saying government hasn’t engaged the students.

“If there are conflicts like these you have to engage the protesters.”

On Tuesday clashes broke out between police and students outside Parliament, with officers using stun grenades and teargas to force the large group back from the steps of the National Assembly.

Thousands of students scattered in all directions when the stun grenades went off outside the venue where Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene was delivering his midterm budget speech.

This is part of a national mass action against proposed fee hikes.

The #FeesMustFall Campaign has seen a number of tertiary institutions come to a standstill this week as students protest against proposed tuition fee hikes.

The protests are to show university management that there must be a zero percent increase to next year’s fees and an end to exorbitant increases to tuition fees.

Friedman said one of the problems has been that the students have been regarded as being unreasonable.

You stay in touch by negotiating and talking to people, clearly government is out of touch with reality.

Professor Steven Friedman

The professor added that ministers should not be ducking students and universities shouldn’t be rushing to court.

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