Police in Lusaka have arrested 333 students from Evelyn Hone College who were protesting against their failure of examination.
In the afternoon yesterday, police apprehended 126 students who were marching to TEVETA to demand answers on their poor results.
Lusaka Province Police Commissioner Nelson Phiri confirmed to News Diggers! Wednesday, that the students were arrested for breaching peace.
“I don’t know who but we have arrested 126 students from Evelyn hone college for breaching the peace. [We arrested them] this afternoon,” he said.
Meanwhile, in a statement released today, Police Spokesperson Esther Mwaata Katongo has disclosed that 207 more students were arrested for protesting around 23:00 hours yesterday, bringing the total number of those in detention to 333.
“Police in Lusaka arrested 207 more students in the Evelyn Hone riot which happened last night at about 23:00 hours. This brings the total number of those arrested to 333. Among the 207 arrested last night, 119 are male while 88 are female students. The students were repelled from going to the main road and later caused damage to the infrastructure at their school particularly the institutional Clinic and Administration block. They further pulled down the wall fence that demarcates Evelyn Hone and NIPA also the one that demarcates Evelyn Hone and ZICAS,” stated Katongo.
“We have information that some of the students from NIPA participated in the confusion while there was none from ZICAS. Officers are still screening the students so as to establish the number of those coming from other institutions. All are detained in police custody.
We wish to advise the students at Evelyn Hone especially their Students Union to find amicable ways of addressing their grievance and the best approach would be to engage relevant authorities. As Police, we are not going to tolerate any lawlessness and those found outside the boundaries of what the Law provides for will be dealt with accordingly.”
The students are currently detained at Central Police.
Meanwhile, students who sought anonymity narrated that the apprehended students had planned to go to TEVETA because a large percentage of them had failed in various courses.
They further explained that the demonstration was peaceful as they were only seeking an audience with TEVETA officials following their poor results.
“The students had planned to go to TEVETA, in fact they even came out of Evelyn Hone premises heading to Teveta. At that point that’s when the police moved in and arrested them from Church Road before they could even reach TEVETA. That was in the afternoon around 12 hours. They are currently detained at Central police. When the students were arrested they were not even burning tires, they were heading to TEVETA in quest to seek an audience with that institution over the results which have some irregularities. The students are saying management has failed them. But the situation is calm now. No one is misbehaving at the moment,” a student narrated.
“What I heard is that the demonstration is as a result of tuition fees and TEVETA results. There have been complaints of late that TEVETA results were not genuine, well, for other courses. After the results came out, a lot of people had failed. Some of the affected courses are Journalism, Pharmacy, STD and others. They (students) demanded that the exam papers are taken back for remarking. For instance Journalism course, only about eight passed, cleared. The students were pressuring management to take the results back to TEVETA so that they are remarked but it looks like there were no efforts from management to do so. That’s what forced the students to carry out a demonstration.”