Students to march to Union Buildings

Lizeka Tandwa, News24

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma will be forced to face the wrath of protesting students on Friday when they descend on the Union Buildings to await his address.

Thousands of students, civil society groups and academics will be waiting for the president’s comments on the tuition fee hike debate that has gripped the country since last Wednesday.

The protest started when Wits University students protested against a proposed 10.5% fee hike. It spread to campuses nationwide, with over 100 students being arrested.

Police were also seen on TV screens across the country firing stun grenades and teargas at protesting students.

March in London

South African students in London will also be marching to the SA High Commission on Friday in solidarity with the march to the Union Buildings.

Jared Sacks, a South African studying in London, said they expect over 100 South African and non-South African youths to join them in their march to the South African High Commission on Friday.

"Fees affect all of us. Even those of us studying in the UK. This is an international issue. However, it starts in South Africa. We want to show full support to the tens of thousands of South African students who are shutting down their universities to demand fee education for all. We want to pressure South Africa through their High Commission in London to listen to the students," he said.

"I am one of the many South African students in London who have put the call out to picket outside South Africa House next to Trafalgar Square. This was the site of hundreds of demonstrations against the apartheid government where exiles and supporters called for the release of ANC, PAC and other political prisoners," Sacks added.

Sacks said some of his friends were arrested during the protest and he was worried for their safety.