The NMMU XM Clubhouse was reported as being set alight in the early hours of this morning – Monday 17 October 2016 (the earliest reference to the fire we can find is a tweet sent at 1:29 am by @szndzoyiya – see below for the tweet).
At 3:26 am this morning the NMMU Fees Must Fall Movement posted the statement below on their Facebook page:
What matters most is that we remain resolute. Ours is Free Decolonized Education, anything counter to this is not ours.
We are fighting for free education and we understand that after we win this fight we need an institution to return to, one with infrastructure to build a better tomorrow, one with facilities that speak to the needs of Africa and the world over.
We have been informed of an NMMU facility that was set alight in the early hours of the morning. We are very angry that our facilities have been disrespected to this degree, similarly we are of the opinion that arson is not a revolutionary act but a crime that should not go unattended, thus as a movement we strongly condemn such acts. The law when unjust should be challenged, but we will never be able to justify the destruction of spaces that are used by the same people we are fighting for in the name of building a better future, it is counterintuitive and against our principles.
We will work with the law enforcement in our capacity to ensure that those who threaten to harm our resources are brought to book, similarly we encourage all of those who know anything to come forward to ensure the same.
Let it be known to all of those who aspire to delegitimize us that we will not let you, let it be known to all of those we fight alongside that even in the face of such adversity we will keep our eyes firmly fixed on our goal.
We are the sons and daughters of a better tomorrow, we are the children of a promised future, we are those who will go and get free education and despite elements that seek to delegitimize our cry, asijiki !
Here are a selection of comments from the post above:
At 3:54 am Sean Imibongo Dwayne said: It might happen that its not people from the FMF movement…what if its the people opposing the fmf movement since we are already bad guys in the eyes of the public…hence for them it would be so easy to blame it all the fmf movement….
At 4:08 am Kay Bongi replied: My thoughts exactly. Tactics to further delegitimize us. I am so convinced of this.
At 4:19 am Siyasanga Saula said: When society starts to take laws into their own hands is because they lost hope and confidence in the legal system. Now its crystal clear that the students that burnt the club house has lost hope in the FMF, and i don’t blame them. I understand the FMF doesn’t want to win this pivotal cause by breaking the law but it’s been done before in the past during the fight of an oppressive govt i:e the apartheid era and it will be done in the future. Students need hope, assurance and burning property to them was giving them that hope. Now what am i saying i don’t support the burning of university property but i understand the motive behind it. When things go South we can’t throw students to the lion’s den we just have to make them listen n justify to them that the is a better way to do this, to handle this and burning is not one of them.
At 6:20 am Savela Qiniso said: the call fof free education is genuine bt burning of property is a totally different thing. Nithi batini abantwana base Res when you burn their clubhouse? The Movement has just lose supporters just by the actions of the few hooligans.
At 6:44 am Sanelisiwe Owethu Ntabeni said: Anyways I firmly believe that the movement was not involved in burning of buildings. Had the movement been about burning, we would have started last year. It’s disgusting that a handful of savages who seek to gain relevance have resorted to basic tactics. We see you with you views from the scenes.
At 6:57 am Samkele Siphosethu Ngcefa said: This is what happens when someone starts something they can’t control. I hope you are happy, you criminals
At 7:10 am Cloude-ray Swiss Sagandira said: If these were the so called new tactics you said you wouldn’t disclose then you have finally lost the plot. Is this the element of surprise you were boasting about last night? If this movement has a hand in this then its disappointing. I hope NOT. The so called quality education in burnt buildings? Never. We are used to boast around that we have mature & responsible students at NMMU, that was our pride but now we doing this? We all have been working hard to fly NMMU’s flag high as we all love our institution and let’s not take 10 steps back.
At 7:11 am Seth Fox Blignaut said: A few status updates ago, your comments were filled with “NMMU will burn” and “NMMU will become like Wits” comments which have mysteriously disappeared, what gives?
At 8:11 am Asemahle MmaMorena Lekorotsoana said: Management has framed us together with the police ?? shouldnt there be like police everywhere searching us for student cards or any weapons ? Instead theres still a hand full of them like before.
At 8:38 am Hlumelo Mello Sonjani said: Any agreement reached on the FMF is reached by the general mass. The mass did not agree to this,therefore the FMF is not part of any of this. This is a criminal activity. And it must be clear that we want those who have burnt this Club House to be arrested and charged.
At 8:39 am Fiona Falconer said: If you hadn’t started this in the first place this wouldn’t have happened!!!! Where do you think the magical pennies are going to come from???? No one is holding a gun to your head ..if you dislike your Varsity so much then leave!!!!
At 8:57 am Siyabonga Daniels said: Certainly does not make sense, why burn down a useless clubhouse when there are lecture halls and labs? Most people who commented on this post need to use their brains. Remember queen elizabeth’s statue in central? a white man did that trying to frame a black man(And this was proven). Smells like #opennmmu to me-these white pigs have too much anger
At 9:53 am Kwanda Jakalase said: This is bullshit. You told people in your massmeetings YESTERDAY at Digs. That you have Petrol Bombs ready to burn buildings and police vehicles. Insighting violence, now that what you said you are READY to do happens. Now you tell us you had nothing do with it. This has everything to do with you. Directly or Indirectly.Now you are victimising yourselves as always,running like puppies with tails in between their legs. Take responsibility and reflect these elements out of the movement. The fight is for a good cause how you fight it, determines its true intentions.
— Siphile Hlwatika (@SiphileHlwatika) October 17, 2016
@szndzoyiya tweeted at 1:29 am:
— FeesMustFall (@szndzoyiya) October 16, 2016
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