Media statement on the UFH senate decision regarding enrolment of EC premier Oscar Mabuyane at the University of Fort Hare

FROM THE OFFICE OF THE EASTERN CAPE PREMIER

Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane. File photo.
Picture: Sunday Times/Masi Losi

I have received a number of media enquiries about the decision of the Senate of the University of Fort Hare (UFH) to exclude and deregister me from the Master of Administration degree.

Although a decision of this nature would ordinarily be handled between the University and myself as a student, as required by the policies of the University, it is apparent that this decision reached the media before I even had knowledge or sight of the letter.

I would like to confirm that indeed I received a letter from the University which states that the Senate has approved a Faculty of Management and Commerce recommendation to exclude and deregister me as a student of the institution, reportedly following a review conducted in respect of students who were supervised by Professor Edwin Ijeoma.

I would also like to confirm that this is the first time that the University has communicated to me about this matter. Instead, the only communication I’ve received from the University to date has

been in relation to my studies, which includes the allocation of a new supervisor on November 2, 2020 and granting of an ethical clearance by the Interfaculty Research Ethics Committee on the  February 19, 2021.

I would like to express my serious concerns and dissatisfaction regarding the fact that I was neither informed that there was a process of reviewing my enrolment at the university, nor was I afforded an opportunity to make representations on a process that might have an adverse effect on me.

It is also worrying that a student could be excluded and deregistered from the university on the basis that their supervisor was under investigation. My understanding is that the admission of a student is done following extensive selection and admission processes and that no single individual in the university has the authority to admit students, and if that’s the case, it is cause for concern.

Nonetheless, it is on this basis that I have requested the university to provide me with reasons for their decision and thus expressed my intention to appeal the Senate outcomes, including a possible judicial review if needs be. I therefore appeal that the media and the public allow this process to unfold and as such I would not be commenting further on the matter.

I remain committed to the fight against corruption and fraud as well as the programme of renewing our movement and our country, and that no attempts will detract us from carrying out this work.

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