On the 16th of October, members of the UCT Council approved a proposal for mandatory Covid-19 vaccinations for campus access.
By Josh Raynham (Staff Writer)
During a meeting on the 16th of October, the UCT council concluded that by December 2021 the university executive will be required to produce a diverse constitutional panel to plan and develop the operational details needed to see the mandatory vaccination proposal carried through its various stages.
Brought forward by Professor Linda-Gail Bekker, who later told News24 that “it was important to get classrooms and laboratories up and running again,” the proposal sees that from the 1st of January 2022, the University of Cape Town will require all staff as well as students to provide adequate proof of vaccination against the Covid-19 virus in order to be allowed to return to campus. The decision, however, came after many weeks of deliberation and with the help of both UCT staff and students.
The UCT senate voted overwhelmingly in support of mandatory vaccinations, with 83% of respondents voting in favour of it. Outgoing SRC president, Declan Dyer, commented on the approval of the mandate by stating that while it has been accepted, there still remain concerns around the exclusionary aspect of such a mandate in practice.
On Wednesday the 20th of October, Vice Chancellor Phakeng sent out an email announcing the induction of the mandate as well as words of encouragement towards students still hesitant to get the vaccination.