Four bodies were found in a canal by al-Jazeera University
A Sudanese university temporary shut down on Saturday after four bodies were found in a nearby canal. The deceased were students at al-Jazeera University.
The director of the university, Mohammad Omar
Waraq, announced that the four students drowned, according to the autopsy. The police have started an investigation – the case is being treated as suspicious.
Three of the deceased students were from Darfur.
Students were involved in violent protests and marches last week to denounce the Sudanese government’s plan to impose tuition fees for students from Darfur.
All the lectures have been suspended until further notice.
A professor from the university told Arabstoday that the establishment could not afford to welcome all Darfuri students: “Students from camps in Darfur won’t have to pay tuition fees, but al-Jazeera University cannot take on all Darfuri students, we have poor financial resources.”
The professor denounced the violence he witnessed on the premises: “Students blocked the entrances to lectures and attacked other students who were trying to attend the classes.”
But an agreement between the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Economy stated that the latter would fund all students coming from Darfur, an official source told Arabstoday. There is not set date to apply this agreement, the source said.
That was as many Sudanese Universities have witnessed actions of violence and clashes between students and police.
In a statement to Arabstoday on Saturday’s evening, the Liberation and Justice Movement spokesman, Ahmed Fadel, said that he was commissioned by the head of the movement to visit the university to mediate the situation.
According to him, the clashes led to some students to fall in the canal. Some protesters are still missing.
An agreement was signed in 2006 to exempt all Darfur students from paying tuition fees, but the Doha agreement stated that tuition fee exemption could only be possible for Darfuri refugees.
Universities have complained that identifying the students in need was a difficult task. They demanded the Darfuri authorities to select the appropriate candidates who could benefit from a tuition fee exemption.