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Limkokwing students drag varsity to court

Khahliso Khama

 MASERU — Limkokwing University’s Student Representative Council (SRC) has filed an urgent High Court application seeking an order to force the management to reopen the institution.

The university was closed last week after students went on strike to protest what they said was “poor management and lack of basic services like the internet”.

The students were also complaining that most of their lecturers were incompetent or not qualified.

The Limkokwing management had also failed to keep several promises, the students said.

The SRC argues instead of addressing their grievances the management rushed to close the university.

The university was closed for 19 days starting on September 16.

SRC president Moeketsi Pholo told the Sunday Express that they decided to take the matter to court after realising that their “pleas for negotiations with the management fell on deaf ears”.

Pholo said they were particularly worried that the management had not given a “valid” reason for closing the school.

He said after they became aware that the university was closing, they requested an urgent meeting with the management last Friday.

But instead of meeting them the student service manager (SSM) instructed them to vacate the college premises.

“Just before our meeting, we were told by the SSM that we were no longer allowed in the school’s premises because the SRC is also part of the students so we should go home like any other student,” Pholo said.

“We tried two times to sit down with the management and solve our problems but they failed to come up with a fair and reasonable solution.”

He said they refused to leave the premises demanding that the management write them two formal letters — one requesting them to leave and another explaining why the university was closed — but their request was rejected.

Pholo said on Monday security guards at the university’s campus ordered them not to enter the Limkokwing premises. He said the guards told the students that they were acting on instructions from the university management.

He said it was then that the SRC approached the High Court for redress.

In the face of legal action, the management has allegedly softened and asked the students to withdraw their case from the High Court.

“We did not reach any consensus so we did not withdraw the case,” Pholo said.

Efforts to contact the university’s management failed.

Limkokwing University was launched in Lesotho on October 15 2008 with a student enrolment of 1 200.

The school, a private creative arts institution, is named after its Malaysian founder Lim Kok Wing.

Besides Lesotho, the university also has campuses in Malaysia, Botswana, Cambodia, Indonesia, China and the United Kingdom.

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