09 March 2016
Dear colleagues and students,
We are writing to update you on a number of recent developments on campus which we would like to bring to your attention, namely:
Rape and robbery suspect sought in relation to incident at Rhodes Memorial
SAPS has named a suspect and issued a photograph of a man wanted in connection with the rape and robbery of a woman close to Rhodes Memorial on 19 November 2015.
In a statement, police said there was a possibility that the same suspect “could be linked to similar cases in the area”. The suspect has been named as Patrick Hlomane (44) also known as Mthunzi Makhamba.
Anyone with information should call Captain Ruan Brummer on 074 861 6691 or Crime Stop on 086 001 0111. All information will be treated confidentially.
Salary negotiations concluded
Salary negotiations have now been concluded with all bargaining bodies at UCT. NEHAWU and the Employees Union (EU) signed agreements at the beginning of March, while the UCT Academics' Union (UCTAU) settled in December last year. All increases will be backdated to January 2016.
UCT staff speak out
UCT staff are voicing their views about the events on campus during February 2016. Staff have spearheaded two petitions calling for peaceful engagement in debates and a cessation of violence by protesters on campus; while the Law Faculty have issued a statement condemning the violence and voicing their confidence in the leadership team. Writing as a mother, Professor Nonhlanhla Khumalo tells protesters that while many support their concerns, some of the methods they use can be interpreted as dehumanising.
You can view these statements here:
Action taken against a member of a private security company
UCT received a complaint about the behaviour of a member of the private security on campus. An investigation followed and in our view the officer was guilty of unacceptable behaviour of swearing at a student and making offensive remarks. The officer was immediately removed from the UCT campus and has subsequently been dismissed from the security company. Please report any incidents to the university Ombud or on 021 650 4805. Private security work under instruction from UCT and have a strict code of conduct; should any member not be adhering to this code, action will be taken against them as demonstrated in this incident.
Interdict application process
Following the events of 16 February 2016, UCT, on an urgent basis, sought and was granted relief through an interim interdict of the High Court. This order interdicted, amongst others, 16 named respondents. UCT sought this relief given the circumstances that prevailed at the time, which were judged to be extremely serious, and had done so on the basis of the prima facie evidence it had available to it at the time.
Since then the University has been considering further information and assessing evidence available to it about the events of 16 February, including the period immediately preceding 16 February 2016. For information on the interdict process please visit the UCT website which is regularly updated.
Update on accommodation
All students with a housing offer for 2016 have been accommodated. In addition, Student Housing and Residence Life (SHRL) have managed to offer accommodation to a number of vulnerable students, both new and returning. SHRL have also assisted over 2 000 students to find off campus accommodation and will continue to support and assist students who are seeking suitable off campus accommodation.
Update on registration
Registration for 2016 has now been concluded. It was the first year that a remote registration option was used for some programmes. This proved popular with returning students. The highest uptake for electronic registration was in the Faculty of Law where 68% registered remotely. Efforts are underway to further expand, for 2017 and beyond, the opportunity for remote electronic registration. This will however not be at the expense of face-to-face curriculum advice where it is required. Another innovation this year was the use of a single venue for registration, which provided faculty and support services in one place. The single venue option for registration proved successful and will almost certainly be repeated next year. A total of 26 647 students have registered for the 2016 academic year. Of these 66% (17 630) are undergraduate and 34% (9 017) are postgraduate students. A total of 5 722 (33%) of undergraduate and 4 677 (52%) of postgraduate students are at UCT for the first time. In terms of demographics 60% of the total registered student body are black, 23% is African black, just less than 1% are Chinese, 13% are coloured and 7% are Indian, whilst 28% are white. The international students make up 16% of the total student body and those undeclared are 13%.
UCT Teaching and Learning Conference
After the annual UCT Teaching and Learning Conference (TLC) for 2015 was postponed, registrations for the TLC 2015-Deferred are now open. The conference will take place on 30 March 2016 from 07h45 to 17h00 at Leslie Social Science, Upper Campus.
All queries relating to the conference can be directed to email@example.com.