Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lecturers to help defend suspended Bunda students

"Written for Nyasa Times"

University of Malawi’s Chancellor College lecturers who were fired by the University Council have pledged support for the seven students who were fired from the defunct Bunda College of Agriculture for their conduct during the Academic Freedom Demos.

Jessie Kabwila-Kapasula who is the Acting President for Chancellor College Academic Staff Union told Nyasa  Times that they will support the suspended students because they [CCASU] hate to see any casualties in the ight for Academic Freedom.

Bright Theu, Lawyer representing the lecturers in the court cases against the University Council also said that there are ‘plans to work with the students and to find possible ways to assist them,’ further revealing that he would soon be meeting the lawyers of the students to discuss how they can work together.

Kapasula and Theu all confirmed that one of the students has already secured an Injunction stopping Bunda from implementing the decision to suspend him.

“An injunction has indeed been granted in Lilongwe and it is due service. As you remember we said that we would provide whatever help we can,” Theu said.

Nyasa Times separately learned that Peter Mkandawire, one of the seven students obtained the
injunction through lawyer Chimwemwe Sikwese on Friday.

Vice-Principal and chairman of the disciplinary committee at Bunda, Charles Masangano, said the injunction is within the student’s rights but said that Bunda would face them in court.

The seven students who include the students’ union president, Fraction Phwitiko, Peter Mkandawire, Benard Mshali, Ian Onion and George Thandaza, were suspended for alleged indiscipline during student riots and disrespect of the school’s disciplinary procedures as they demonstrated demanding academic freedom in April this year.

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