No student lost their lives during the illegal protest at the NWU Vanderbijlpark Campus on 27 February

The North-West University (NWU) notes false and malicious information spread on digital media regarding incidents that emanated from an illegal protest action at the Vanderbijlpark Campus on 27 February 2024.

No student has died as maliciously reported by unscrupulous individuals. It is a fact that a group of students disrupted the university’s academic programme and other activities on campus. The free movement of staff and students was made impossible due to a blockage of all entrance and exit points. The protesting students became unruly, and their actions posed a threat to other students, staff, and university property.

Consequently, the NWU Protection Service and the South African Police Service (SAPS) intervened to ensure safety and security as the students’ actions had started to be violent. Teargas and rubber bullets were fired by police to disperse the crowd. Some students were arrested during this chaotic incident. Two students were allegedly knocked down by a car when another student tried to get away from the crowd. The two students were taken to the hospital and were discharged after evaluation by the medical practitioners. One student had to return to hospital on 28 February for further medical check-up but never admitted. Support has been provided to affected students. All incidents that occurred on 27 February are currently being investigated, including the incident where students were alleged to have been knocked down by a motor vehicle.

We condemn the unnecessary and illegal protest action that resulted in the accident and urge students to refrain from spreading misinformation and malicious reports. It is disappointing to note that some people who claim to be journalists and quasi-journalists are also reporting this malicious misinformation and disinformation without verifying the facts. The NWU stakeholders, including students and staff across our campuses deserve factual and responsible reporting. Relevant policies and rules will be applied to those whose intentions are to damage the name of the university.

Issued by: NWU Corporate Relations and Marketing
Enquiries: Louis Jacobs, 082 901 6435

Submitted on Fri, 03/01/2024 - 11:31