Tempers flared as students queued for many hours to register at Groenkloof campus on 7 February. Students were upset by the scheduled two hour lunch break for registration staff despite the ever-increasing volume of students and claimed that down time on computers did nothing to help the situation. According to Keorapetse Rangwaga, a second-year education student, the lunch break lasted two and a half hours. During this time many students jumped the queue resulting in further delays because officials would not recommence registration until students were standing in a proper line. Rangwaga, who waited in line for six hours, said that many students left without registering after being told that registration was ending at 16:00. Students were told that anyone who had not registered before this time would have to do so the next day in addition to paying a R300 late registration fee. Many students claimed they were told that the delay was due to technical problems. Carmen Taljaard, a second-year education student, reported being told that the long wait was because the computer system was down. Melinda Joubert, assistant director of student administration for the faculty of education pointed out that this was only the second time the new Main Frame Computer System was used for registration. “Due to the large number of students registering, it created an overflow of data and resulted in the system being offline for nearly two hours on all campuses,” she told Perdeby. However, an assistant working at registration, who wishes to remain anonymous, stated that the technical problems only took place during the two hour lunch break and so had not affected registration. She also said that they were not allowed to close until everyone in line had registered. Staff were quick to point out that a large percentage of students ignored their designated registration dates and turned up at the last minute “Too many people showed up that weren’t supposed to register today,” said the assistant.
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