Nelson Mandela University (NMU)
On 20 July, the university formally known as the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University relaunched itself as NMU. The rebranding came two days after Nelson Mandela Day.
The official ceremony took place at the university’s Missionvale campus where Deputy President Dr Cyril Ramaphosa delivered the keynote speech.
In a press release statement, NMU said that the new name gives the institution an opportunity to rebrand and position itself continentally and globally. Furthermore, it will “usher in a new era of renewed vigour towards meaningful transformation”. For NMU, the relaunch will be in celebration of Mandela’s efforts which the institution, through its values, tries to mirror. These include ubuntu, integrity and “respect for diversity”.
University of KwaZulu Natal (UKZN)
Julius Malema met with his student supporters at UKZN’s Westville campus on 25 July. His address was in preparation for the EFF’s fourth year birthday celebrations. Describing his address as “frank”, Independent Online reported that Malema urged students to realise and accept their financial standing and live within their means. “Malema said that many students could not join the struggle of the poor because they pretend to be rich,” the publication added.
Furthermore, he urged students to support one another, with News24 writing that he said: “A poor child who does not have food should not be a laughing stock among black people.”
University of the Western Cape (UWC)
On 22 July, UWC lost one of its first year students, Siyamthanda Betana, in the violent Imizamo Yethu protests. These protests were held to improve service delivery in Hout Bay.
Independent Online reports that Betana’s mother, Agnes Betana, had to identify his body the following morning after he did not return home from the local sports fields. Siyamthanda Betana’s father died on 24 July after he had collapsed, “traumatised by the news” of his son’s death.
According to News24, police are still investigating the fatal shooting and no arrests have been made.
Compiled by Ntombi Mkandhla