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Protest continues at NMU despite alleged rape victim withdrawing case against boyfriend

By Afikile Lugunya - Aug 6, 2018
Protest continues at NMU despite alleged rape victim withdrawing case against boyfriend

The 21-year-old Nelson Mandela University student, who was allegedly raped on Friday has withdrawn the charges.

According to the police spokesperson, Colonel Priscilla Naidu, the case was closed on Monday morning.

"The 21-year-old NMU student opened a case of rape on Saturday morning," said Col Naidu.

"Her boyfriend was arrested and detained. The complainant withdrew the case a few hours later.

"On Monday, the complainant had a consultation with the prosecutor and the case remains closed."

However, that has not stopped Nelson Mandela University students, who began protesting at the university on Monday morning forcing the university to suspend lectures. 

At the time of publishing, the students were still not back at class and NMU management representatives were due to meet with them.

The students are demanding that the university improves its security following similar incidents in which students were either robbed, raped or murdered.

The incident also happened as the country observes Women's Month, which is observed every year in August.

Speaking for the protesting students, Yandisa Jubase, said, that the university has not been taking the students seriously since the previous incidents because nothing has been done to ensure students' safety.

Jubase said that they would hand the same memorandum of demands for better security that they handed in last year to the management with just a few edits.

She added that security personnel at the university also need to be trained and equipped to be able to deal with rape cases.

"When someone reports rape, we understand that it takes courage so who ever receives that report must probe that courage not discourage them. We need to be able to see access control because there is free access in these campuses; they raid student cards for only a week and then things go back to normal," she explained.

"We have had enough, the university must take us seriously and we will not stop until something happens."

The University recently changed its name to Nelson Mandela University and built a new engineering building at North Campus.

"If they are able to spend money on signs and buildings that cost millions, then the university must be able to spend as much money on safety for the students."

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