Xenophobia must fall
Following a spate of attacks of foreign nationals in the country, especially in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, that claimed no less than five lives, the University of Fort Hare joined the rest of the world in condemning such inhumane acts when both students and workers held peaceful pickets on all its campuses (Alice, Bhisho, East London) on April 22nd. In East London, a throng of anti-xenophobia people marched through Church Street from the University’s main building to the Mariam Makeba centre, where the Vice Chancellor, Dr Mvuyo Tom, expressed the official position of the university.
Students in particular, were visible in their different political affiliation regalia but united against such barbaric acts. Departing from a piece(verse) in the national anthem “Nkosi Sikelel’I Africa”, Dr Tom said it should be observed by all that it refers to the entire African continent, not only the southern tip of the continent, and it must be remembered that from the early years Fort Hare drew its students from the whole continent of Africa.
“We stand here to condemn xenophobia, its inhumane nature of hunting and killing other Africans; we are instead meant to empower and develop each other”, said Tom. He said even from the academic perspective, we are universal and knowledge can be enhanced if you go beyond your own area.
We were at home in other African countries during the liberation struggle.
Dr Tom said, “We need to be inclusive in all we are doing… and we do not want to see politics of difference that have led to what we have witnessed in the past week