Tag Archives: South Africa

What Sparked the Student Protests in South Africa?

October 13th, 2016

University of Witwatersrand (Wits University) on Monday, protesters throwing rocks were dispersed by riot police using tear gas, rubber bullets and stun grenades. (Photo credit: Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images)

Monday, October 10, 2016 was supposed to be the start of regular classes at the University of Witwatersrand but this did not happen as students continue their protests against tuition hikes.

Here is some background and update on the ongoing student protests in South Africa:

1. In 2015, tuition fee hikes of between 10% and 12% were proposed.

2. The demonstrations began last October at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. Students blocked the entrance to the university campus in protest against proposed hike in fees by 10.5% for 2016.

3. Under the banner #FeesMustFall, demonstration caused the closure of some of the country’s top universities. President Zuma ordered a freeze on tuition fees for a year.

4. Students have been protesting since September 20th, following the education minister’s announcement that universities can raise tuition up to 8 percent.

5. Protests at many universities have been peaceful. But at the University of Cape Town, protesters lobbed petrol bombs.

Students protesting under the “FeesMustFall” banner. (Photo credit: BBC)


6. Fire destroyed a library at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).

7. Fires were set at Cape Peninsula of Technical (CPUT).

8. Students at Rhodes University put up burning barricades on campus streets.

9. President Jacob Zuma says the damage has cost the government more than $40 million.

10. According to President Zuma, the government has also absorbed $1 billion after similar protests forced a tuition fee freeze last year.

11. Annual increases in student fees differ between universities as fees are determined by institutions. Fees also vary by degree programs.

12. The government subsidizes tuition for poorer students, but undergraduate fees can be as high as $5,000 a year, which makes it unreachable for many black students.

13. More than two decades after the end of apartheid in 1994, South Africans continue to face extreme income inequality. The students want the opportunities they were promised when apartheid ended.

14. Protests show growing disillusionment with the governing African National Congress (ANC), which took power after 1994.

15. On Tuesday, October 11, 2016, President Zuma announced the establishment of a Ministerial Task Team to resolve the current impasse at institutions of higher learning. Those invited to serve on the  Task include heads of the following Ministries: The Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Minister of Higher Education and Training, Minister of Science and Technology, Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Minister of Police, Minister of State Security, Minister of Defense and Military Veterans, and Minister of Home Affairs.  Absent from the team is the Minister of Finance who is set to answer a summons to appear in court on November 2. Ultimately, it is the Finance Ministry that would be tasked with finding the funds to address the funding issue for higher education.

For an audio/webinar presentation of this blog report on student protests in South Africa, please click here: http://www.anymeeting.com/mwemfxacpupn/E954DD83804B3F


http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/10/10/497380342/photos-students-police-clash-in-south-africa-over-free-tuition demands?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=2036






ACEI Logo with Slogan - FINAL

The Academic Credentials Evaluation Institute, Inc. (ACEI), was founded in 1994 and is based in Los Angeles, CA, USA. ACEI provides a number of services that include evaluations of international academic credentials for U.S. educational equivalence, translation, verification, and professional training programs. ACEI is a Charter and Endorsed Member of the Association of International Credential Evaluators. For more information, visit www.acei-global.org.

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Nelson Mandela, South African Music and the Struggle Against Apartheid

December 26th, 2013

On December 5, 2013, Nelson Mandela, a beloved hero, a giant of history and one of the greatest visionary leaders of our time who fought to protect and promote human rights, passed away. As we come to the end of 2013, we would like to pay tribute to Nelson Mandela by sharing a blog from our frequent guest blogger, Tom Schanbel, who writes about the important role music played in shaping the history of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa.

From all of us at ACEI, we wish you and yours a very happy holiday season.

Source: New Yorker, December 16, 2013

During my tenure as music director of KCRW (1979-1991), we had a dedicated African show (The African Beat) and often featured African music on other programs as well. We gathered South African music wherever we could: from Jo’Burg’s Kohinoor Store in Johannesburg, SA, from a woman named Di Brukin who brought us the latest SA grooves when KCRW was still on the John Adams Middle School Campus in 1981-1984. Roger Steffens, host of the popular Reggae Beat show (1979-1989), was sending Paul Simon the latest music from The Cockerel Boys, Kwa Thema High Jumers,  Ladysmith Black Mambazo, and Boyoyo Boys on cassettes. Thus, inspiring Simon to record his epochal Graceland in 1985. We featured a lot of other Zulu Men’s Hostel Choirs too, such as the lesser known Abafana Baseqhudeni. Plus, lots of mbaqanga music–the infectious joy of Zulu jive. All this was during the period where Mandela was incarcerated in his small prison cell on Robben Island, a former leper colony and animal-quarantine center. During the 1980s, black South Africans were acutely aware of Nelson Mandela and the ANC (The African National Congress) that he led. And, music was a weapon against apartheid. We see this in the historic documentary Rhythm of Resistance, shot underground and clandestinely in the mid-1970s.


I once interviewed writer Rian Malan (the grandnephew of David Malan, a major definer of the doctrine of apartheid) on Morning Becomes Eclectic after his book My Traitor’s Heart was published. Rian Malan loved the exuberance of black South African culture, Zulu jive music and the joy it inspired. In this famous book he also wrote of the hatred and criminal horror inspired by apartheid. The irony of it all was not lost on me.

The cover image of the December 16th New Yorker magazine is of Mandela: a combination of both Tommy Smith’s unforgettable black power salute on the podium after winning gold at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics and the Statue of Liberty. Random fact, Tommy Smith later became a track coach at Santa Monica College. This music not only celebrates Mandela’s courage, leadership, and legacy: it is a celebration of life and the triumph of hope over despair.

(Note: Please also read the tribute to Nelson Mandela by Amnesty International in this link:
http://www.amnesty.org.uk/nelson-mandela-1918-2013#.UrCy_tJDuSo )

Tom Schnabel, M.A.
Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres
Host of music program on radio for KCRW Sundays noon-2 p.m.
Blogs for KCRW
Author & Music educator, UCLA, SCIARC, currently doing music salons

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