NTEU condemns, in the strongest terms, the deplorable attack on two female students that occurred at the Nelson Mandela University last night. The rape of one and the stabbing of another is indicative of the scourge of violence that has beset our society.
Our sympathy goes to the victims, families and friends. We expect that they will not only receive the necessary treatment for the trauma they experienced, but that the perpetrators will be found and brought to justice expediently.
However, we understand that this alone will not provide the sense of security that those on campus need. Safety and security has remained a concern for NTEU at the Nelson Mandela University for too long now. It must be stressed that this is not a student, but a community issue. NTEU has been encouraged by the atmosphere of solidarity among both students and staff, again reminded that in a community we draw strength from one another.
Every person, from student to staff to visitor is potentially at risk when safety measures fall short. This was a crime of opportunity with horrific outcomes and we press that Management must engage on this matter with the urgency it warrants. There must be a comprehensive safety and security plan that considers after hour activities and also caters for late lectures. This plan must consider the surrounding areas and routes regularly used by staff and students.
Can there be anything more relevant within higher education than the safety of our children and our colleagues?