Sunday, May 29, 2022

University of Botswana SRC seeks legal advice over suspended bursary

The University of Botswana Students Representative Council (SRC) council says it is still consulting with lawyers on whether to challenge a decision by government suspending their sponsorship for a period of 12 months in court.

This has been confirmed to The Telegraph by UB SRC Vice President, Tiro Diepo.

“We have not been suspended from University but our sponsorship has been terminated and we are now forced to source funds for ourselves to pay for our tuition fees, books┬áand living allowance. The suspension is politically motivated because all the suspended SRC are from the opposition activist. Umbrella for Democratic Change-BNF, BMD),” said Diepo.

He said they had met with Director of the Department of Tertiary Education and Financing, Marcos Maeza, and confirmed that the ministry had taken a decision to suspend their sponsorship.

He said Maeza had confirmed that the letters they had received were from his office.

“We never insult or get involved on any illegal boycott but rather on a peaceful class boycott,” said Diepo.

Among the 16 students on suspension are the former SRC President, Jacob Kelebeng, and even the current SRC president and his Deputies. The SRC has 12 members; 10 are suspension, while two escaped the punishment.

Part of the letter to one of the SRC member says, “In accordance with the new Loan agreement the student termination of sponsorship may results if the student is involved in matters of misconduct which include, but is not limited to unacceptable behavior determined by government.”

UB Acting Director in the Department of Public Affairs, Tefo Magope, told this publication in a separate interview that the UB had not been notified about the scrapped government assistance for a number of student leaders.

“There is nothing official that had been communicated to our office and as such it means the student still belongs to us until we receive an official communication,” said Magope.

Magope further said the students are not suspended or expelled from the University and as such they can still pay for their Tution Fees and continue with their academic study.

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