Universities have experienced extraordinary events in the last few months, with mass support for the strategic goals of ending the injustices of outsourcing, tackling the high price of university education especially for the poor, and accelerating transformation.
Some individuals and groups sought to exploit these legitimate goals of workers and students for other ends as they set out to disrupt university life and the academic programme.
In the context of these events it is heartening to note that more than 45 000 full time students and more than 10 000 enrolled in continuing professional development programmes at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) have completed their 2015 examinations without disruptions. This success underscores our determination to continue protecting the University’s hard-won academic credibility and freedom, stature and integrity.
While we have defended the right of those who wished to participate in legitimate protest actions, we have also secured the right of those who wished to make investments in their academics.
As we go into the New Year, we will continue to engage with students, workers and other stakeholders; while simultaneously continuing to ensure the safety of all concerned, and to protect the University’s property and maintain the integrity of the academic programme.
The transformation of our country requires all of us to stay focused on the path of dialogue, negotiation, engagement and excellence in education. This is the course that the University undertakes to pursue.