Students Rally Against Graft

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By Frederick Philander WINDHOEK The Student Representative Council (SRC) at Unam last week pledged its full and unconditional support to ongoing measures to root out corrupt practices on campus. This was announced at the first General Student Assembly (GSA) meeting of the year on Thursday in the Gym Hall that was attended by hundreds of full-time students. “As you all know the university has embarked upon zero tolerance against corruption to ensure that the institution’s resources are protected and put to good use. We have taken it upon ourselves to ensure that this social evil does not destroy our institution. We thus call upon each student to support the university in this effort,” said SRC president, Kadiva Nghipondoka. She urged fellow students to report absenteeism among lecturers as well as corrupt practices. “You have to make sure that favouritism, victimization, exams fraud by lecturers and tipping off students on exam papers are reported as a matter of urgency, all intended to safeguard ourselves against victimization,” she said. Nghipondoka expressed concern about present negative relationships on campus between male and female students. “We need to develop a culture of care and understanding for each other. By this I mean that male students should not have uncalled for behaviour towards female students. There are cases where male students go round harassing women during the night and this has resulted in females living in constant fear. “In view of the fact that most students struggle to make ends meet, theft of property of students will also not be tolerated anymore,” she warned. Nghipondoka further cautioned students against the abuse of drugs and alcohol as well as irresponsible sexual behaviour. The secretary general of the Namibia National Students Organization (NAN-SO), Neville Andre, got more than he had bargained for when as a guest at the meeting, he requested students to air their views with regard to pertinent problems within the student community in the country. “It is important to know your views and feelings regarding student issues and problems, which are to be brought to the attention of the Ministry of Education through the right channel, in this case the Education Advisory Council on which I serve,” said Andre. Students then spontaneously highlighted problems such as a lack of sufficient accommodation at the Unam campus, lecturers threatening and harassing students on a daily basis and the allocation of bursaries that needs to be done in line with the rate of inflation in the country. The SRC reported a healthy bank balance of more than N$600 000, of which N$160 000 is earmarked for the annual culture festival at the institution.