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| DeurAfriForum

University of Pretoria admits their policies are racist

The University of Pretoria (UP) has today admitted that their policies are racist and they want to withhold information about these racist policies from their students. AfriForum Youth planned to put up posters at the UP campus today, which contain content from a comprehensive report on the state of non-racialism at South African universities. However, the Acting Dean of Student Affairs, Dr Willem Jorissen, disapproved of the posters because they apparently bordered on racism. The posters expose the findings of AfriForum Youth’s report, namely that the racial policies that currently apply at this institution have an enormous scope and far-reaching implications.

“Racial classification leads unequivocally to racial discrimination. As a Tukkies student, I wanted to bring the AfriForum Youth report, entitled The status of non-racialism at South African universities, to the attention of the university management, but it now seems as if they are well aware of the racist policies and aim to protect these racist policies. The posters would also serve the purpose of making students, who have the right to know, aware of racism, so that we can apply pressure to have real non-racial policies at Tuks,” says Maree van den Berg, member of AfriForum Youth’s Tuks branch.

In March of this year, AfriForum Youth sent all 26 public universities an application in terms of the Act on the Promotion of Access to Information (PAIA) to get clarity on their racial classification policies. The answers were detailed in a report that examines the elements of non-racialism at these institutions, and policy proposals were made by the youth organisation to ensure that the university policies are truly non-racial.

“Tuks’ admission that their policies are racist comes at a turbulent time on campus, especially with the EFF Student Command of the UP who have recently rekindled racial tension on the Tuks campus. AfriForum Youth encourages the public to support our petition to force the university management, who have been apathetic to date, to deregister the EFFSC UP as a student organisation,” says René van der Vyver, spokesperson for AfriForum Youth.

AfriForum Youth has designed posters that showcase information that is contained in the UP’s policies, for example that prospective students who do not want to classify their race during the application process will have their applications considered incomplete, as well as the fact that the UP has ten policy documents that makes reference to race.