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Catholic University students threaten protests over exam dates

by BustopTV

By Paidashe Mandivengerei

CATHOLIC University of Zimbabwe (CUZ) students have vowed to roll out mass action on Monday against the tertiary institution over set examinations dates.

This follows the decision by CUZ to have all students report to campuses in a phased approach and write their end of semester examinations this June.

Conventional, parallel and block release students in the Humanities and Commerce faculties are set to write their examinations from this Monday 22 June to month end.

Students from the Theology and Developmental Studies faculties completed their exams the first two weeks of June with 5% of learners failing to show up.

A member of the CUZ Students Representative Council who spoke to Bustop TV on condition of anonymity said they had resorted to demonstrating as the university administration had ignored their concerns and ambushed them into writing examinations.

“We cannot write examinations without any substantial information, online lectures were ineffective as no lecture recordings were shared as promised.

“We fear that we might contract the corona virus as well so we will protest this Monday the 22nd,” he said.

CUZ students petitioned the university administration to postpone the set examinations date citing that failure to follow World Health Organisation guidelines could result in the spread of Covid-19, online lectures had been ineffective and the physical classes before the school closed had been affected by a staff strike.

The Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) in a statement called on CUZ to reverse the decision to have students write exams saying the move would affect the quality of education.

“We demand that the Catholic University in Zimbabwe sets aside their decision to rush students into exams as it is fatal to the interests of the students and the quality degrees.

“Failure to rescind their decision may force us into pursuing ways that would stop them but could ordinarily have been avoided.”

In a notice addressed to CUZ students and staff, the Vice Chancellor, Ranga Zinyemba said students who would have failed to report to campus for their examinations were expected to submit reports explaining their reasons.

“The university is aware of the challenges that students and staff have faced and continue to face since the onset of lockdown provisions in the country and will consequently not penalize any student who misses examinations in this staggered series. As in the first phase of this examinations’ series, students who for one reason or another miss the examinations are advised to submit written reports to their departments explaining why they missed the examinations. The university will analyze the written reports in order to determine how students so affected can be assisted,” reads part of the communique.

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