#FeesMustFall protestors brought Campus Health Week proceedings to a temporary halt this Monday when they harassed volunteers, but organisers say the event will continue as planned.
Protests which disrupted lectures and saw a venue set alight on Monday, April 4, also briefly disrupted the start of the first-ever Campus Health Week at Wits University.
Service providers participating in the event were harassed by #FeesMustFall protesters who also damaged the setup on the library lawns as they moved across the campus demonstrating for free education.
“As the protestors came down they completely trashed and broke our gazebos,” said Wits SRC (Student Representatives Council), member and event organizer Yakira Amoils.
Both private service providers and Wits medical student volunteers were performing free health risk assessments such as blood pressure testing, glucose testing and HIV/AIDS screening when the protesters arrived on the lawns.
Protesters turned over the service providers’ tables, damaged the gazebos and told them to leave. “Following that, all the private vendors didn’t want be here so they left,” said Amoils.
“It’s a pity that good events like this get disrupted,” said 3rd year medical student Gabriel Zollmann, one of the event’s organisers. This year was the first year Campus Health Week occurred and over 100 students were tested before the disruptions occurred.
Organisers enlisted the help of additional medical student volunteers to handle the long line of students interested in making use of the services on offer.
Student-run initiatives like the fitness classes will continue on Tuesday and external service providers (including the glucose and AIDS testing service) have promised to return when the area is safe.
“In our eyes Campus Health Week today was still successful because we managed to get students tested and managed to spread awareness,” said Zollmann.
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