Hundreds of Zimbabwe medical students including many in their final year say they will not return to university until recently hiked fees are slashed.
However, many of them now have nowhere to live in the meantime.
Many students – and they come from all over Zimbabwe – were told to leave the halls of residences which are on campus and they said they now had nowhere to stay.
University of Zimbabwe security accused the students of throwing stones when they gathered for their protest outside the Students Union.
“We haven’t been expelled from our course. We have been kicked out of our rooms. But we won’t go back to study until they cut the fees. We are on strike,” said a final year medical student who was on campus at the University of Zimbabwe in Harare on Tuesday.
He asked not to be named. “We don’t know how long this will go for. We just can’t pay these fees,” he said.
Some students said their fees had been doubled.
The students had a small demonstration on campus on Monday and some were surprised when Evan Mawarire, a former pastor who became known for his articulate criticism of the government via his #This Flag on social media showed up at the university to support them. He lamented the sudden increase in fees.
“It is an assault on the future of our nation and we as the protectors and owners of that future – we cannot allow it to carry on.”
Mawarire was arrested at the university and charged with ‘disturbing the peace.’
The student’s strike and demonstration was not reported by state-controlled newspapers.