SRC Oath of Office Ceremony

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On the 21st of July 2016, an Oath of Office was performed at the Faculty of Health Sciences Boardroom in East London. This day served as a reminder to the SRC that they have declared their service to the University of Fort Hare, and as such they will always lead with dignity and uphold the standards of the University especially when addressing community related issues. It was however noticeable that there were limited staff and students in attendance and maybe this prestigious ceremony should have been much bigger, with more members of staff and the student parliament taking seat.

As small as it was, the event was graced with the presence of Mr S. Ncengwa (Student Developer); Mr B. Gallant (Dean of Students); Prof L. Obi (Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic Affair- filling in for Dr M Tom- Vice Chancellor, who was away on other important business); and SRC members from the Institutional Council and well as East London and Alice campuses. Several University staff members were also in attendance.

When giving his speech, SRC President, Mr Bulali Rawana stated that being part of the SRC during the University’s centenary year puts a lot more pressure on him [and his fellow members]. Being up for the challenge, he contended that what the 2016/17 SRC will be focusing on is the vision of the University; and if they do not fulfil the objectives set out by the Institution, or they become divided in practice, the students will inevitably suffer. Lastly, he asserted that, the role of the SRC is not to fight against management; but to work in collaboration with it to find and overcome any obstacle the University might be faced with.

Prof Obi supports the above notion, and suggested that once some students get into power positions, they think it is now their duty to promote and implement radicalism. This should not be the case; the SRC is there to act as ambassadors of the University and should also assist in the tackling of issues affecting the University of Fort Hare, such as alcoholism, excessive smoking, HIV/AIDS, rape and sexual harassment, and unwanted pregnancies. Ultimate, they should demote and eradicate risky behaviour amongst students.

The President and members of the 2016/17 SRC swore the following oath: “In accordance with the statute of the University of Fort Hare, I swear (or solemnly affirm) that, as a member of the UFH SRC, I will be faithful to the University of Fort Hare, and will obey, observe, uphold and comply with the University statute, the SRC Constitution and all other laws of the Republic of South Africa; that I will protect and promote the rights of all students; discharge my responsibilities to the best of my knowledge and ability; and true to the dictates of my conscience; do justice to all and devote myself to the wellbeing of the University. (So help me God).

As students and staff of the University of Fort Hare it is our responsibility and right to hold the SRC accountable for their actions, in accordance with the above oath.