We the delegates of the Economic Freedom Fighters branches in institutions of Higher Learning and Training, representing EFF Members from 103 campuses of Universities, Universities of Technology and Technical and Vocational Education and Training TVET (TVET) colleges gathered at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in the historic Students Summit. This Summit is the most representative students’ meeting in South Africa because 103 institutions of higher learning of the available 115 are represented. The EFF Students’ Summit is necessitated by the resolution of the EFF 1st National People’s Assembly, which made a commitment to establish the EFF Students’ Command.
The EFF Students Summit celebrated and commended the victory of EFF Branches in majority of SRC elections that have happened in institutions of Higher Learning and TVET Colleges in 2014 and 2015. We are particularly pleased with the victory of the EFF in the following institutions:
– University of Limpopo, Turfloop Campus.
– Tshwane University of Technology, Soshanguve Campus.
– Vaal University of Technology.
– Central Johannesburg College.
– Tshwane North College, Soshanguve.
– Seshego TVET.
– Makwarela TVET.
– Vhembe TVET.
– Sedibeng TVET.
The EFF victory in all these institutions is testimony that the EFF is a force to be reckoned with and will win many other institutions of higher learning and training. The EFF is the only organisation that represents the true interests of working class and poor students who cut off from financial aid and better students’ services.
The EFF Constitution adopted in the EFF 1st NPA says that, ““The Student Command shall be established as an autonomous structure existing in all institutions of higher learning and post-secondary education and training institutions”. We therefore met to begin a process which will culminate in the official launch of the EFF Students’ Command as an autonomous structure with its own elected leadership at branch, provincial and national level.
The EFF Students’ Summit commits itself to the 7 cardinal pillars for economic freedom in our lifetime. We also discussed and built consensus on 7 Foundational Principles of the EFF Students’ Command, which are
(1) Pursuit of radical higher education transformation with the aim towards free, quality education.
(2) Mobilising students behind the struggle for economic freedom, embodied in the EFF Founding Manifesto.
(3) Championing the interests of students and all workers in institutions of higher learning.
(4) Building a dynamic relationship between students and community struggles and campaigns.
(5) Participating in progressive international campaigns and programmes.
(6) Promoting academic and research excellence and progress.
(7) Contributing to intellectual and ideological discourse in a manner that seek to promote the struggle for economic freedom.
As Students in all institutions of Higher Learning, we will over the next month launch branches of the EFF and elect delegates which will participate in the founding Assemblies of the EFF SC at Provincial and National Level. The EFF National Students Assembly will happen between the 14th and 16th of June 2015 at the University of Limpopo, Turfloop Campus.
We commit to fight for free quality education for all and will do everything in our power to ensure that there is free quality education in South Africa. In the immediate, the EFF will campaign for the banning of financial exclusions for academically deserving students in all institutions of higher learning. We believe that in a South Africa with poverty and low income for many people, it can never be morally justifiable to financially exclude students.
The EFF in institutions of Higher Learning also commits to fight for students and workers rights. In championing the interests of students, the EFF will ensure that following define all students in institutions of higher learning:
(1) All students should have funding for their studies.
(2) All students should have adequate learning, teaching and research materials, including access to computer labs with consistent internet connection.
(3) All students should have food.
(4) All students should have residence and accommodation.
(5) All students should be safe and secured in the University and residences.
(6) All students should have access to free sanitary towels.
(7) All students should have access to free quality healthcare in the institution of higher learning, including emergency services to residences.
(8) All students should have an opportunity to participate in sporting activities of their own choosing.
(9) All students should have the opportunity to participate in legal religious activities of their own choosing, and not forced to religious sects.
In championing the interests of workers, the EFF SC will ensure that workers are protected and given the following rights and necessities in the institutions where the EFF SC exists:
(1) EFF SC will work with workers to ensure that no worker in the institution of higher learning and training is employed by labour brokers or on contracts.
(2) EFF SC will work with workers to ensure that no worker in the institution of higher learning and training is paid a salary that is below R4500.
(3) EFF SC will work with workers to ensure that no worker in the institution of higher learning and training is dismissed without fair hearing and processes.
(4) EFF SC will work with workers to ensure that no worker in the institution of higher learning and training is made to work overtime without due benefits.
(5) EFF SC will work with workers to ensure that no worker in the institution of higher learning and training is subjected to hazardous working conditions.
We commit to ensure that all statues representative of colonial apartheid white supremacy are taken done by any revolutionary means possible. Furthermore, the Summit recognises that the attainment of free quality education and economic freedom is unsustainable without progressive internationalism, thus we shall work with all progressive students formations in the world to ensure the total decomodification of education all over the world.
The EFF will publicly release a discussion document on Higher Education for Economic Freedom which outlines our vision and programmes on Higher Education and Training. This document is a product of thorough engagements and reflections by students from across the country, higher education experts, professors and workers in institutions of higher learning. The perspective presents ground breaking solutions and programme on how to radically transform higher education and training and introduction of free quality higher education.
The EFF Students’ Summit commits to build student mass power in all Universities and campuses across South Africa for the attainment of economic freedom in our lifetime.
ISSUED BY THE ECONOMIC FREEDOM FIGHTERS