Zambia: Gov’t Closes Two Universities after Students’ Riots

The government of Zambia on Wednesday closed two universities and police arrested dozens of students at the state-controlled learning institutions after riots broke out last week.

The Students were demonstrating against the non-payment of bursaries and meal allowances. They burnt tires and used logs to barricade the main road leading from the airport into the capital city Lusaka.

Higher education minister, Michael Kaingu said the government had indefinitely closed the University of Zambia and Copperbelt University to protect people’s lives and property.

“Due to the lack of a conducive environment for learning at the two universities, it has been decided that the two institutions close indefinitely,” Michael Kaingu said in a statement.

Local media reported that police had apprehended 26 students of the University of Zambia who blocked a road and stoned motor vehicles in Lusaka

Higher education minister also confirmed that dozens of other students at the Copperbelt University in Kitwe, who were involved in a separate protest were apprehended.

Inflation in Zambia, Africa’s second-biggest copper producer, has surged to 21.8 percent as falling metal prices cause a slump in the currency and hurt government revenue. A power crisis has also cut output by mining companies and driven up costs.

About Geraldine Boechat 1988 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia