RMF: Dangerous activism threatens freedom - Yusuf Cassim

DASO leader says burning of artwork and buses threaten to distract from the real issues on campus

RMF: Dangerous activism that threatens our democratic freedom

17 February 2016

The Democratic Alliance Student Organisation (DASO) strongly condemns the violent actions taken by the Rhodes Must Fall movement at the University of Cape Town (UCT). Last night the situation on campus quickly escalated into a violent display of illegal and destructive actions executed by members of the movement.

The issue of accommodation is a legitimate and serious concern that is affecting not only UCT, but campuses across South Africa. Students already face difficult circumstances on campus without having to be further negatively impacted by a movement that seeks to divide students using racial rhetoric and divisive actions.

The actions that we have seen from the Rhodes Must Fall movement undermine our hard-won political freedoms and rights to peaceful civil action.

Burning of artwork and busses threatens to distract from the real issues on campus and is only hurting poor students who rely on the free services provided by the University.

We call for students to unite in the face of divisive forces who do not seek progress but instead seek to take our country backwards and destroy Nelson Mandela's project of Reconciliation.

DASO stands with all students who everyday face the almost impossible odds to further their studies. We will continue to fight for you and hold government accountable for the lack of funding, without disrupting your education. Through DASO’s #WTF campaign we will seek to find sustainable solutions to the problems plaguing campuses and we urge all students to join us in a fight to rebuild our campuses instead of destroying it.

Statement issued by Yusuf Cassim MP, DASO Interim Leader, 17 February 2016