South Africa

Photo essay: Day Zero

By Greg Nicolson & Siboniso Mncube 24 October 2015

On Friday, students achieved a historic victory; after a week's protest they ensured there would be no fee increases at universities in 2016. While most students were peaceful in the march to the Union Buildings, a small group were determined to face off with police. GREG NICOLSON and SIBONISO MNCUBE bring you the pictures.

After a fast-paced run, the first group of students arrived at the Union Buildings before 11:00 and marched around the grounds. (Greg Nicolson)

For hours, the aggressive group of students faced of with riot cops, who held their line, intermittently throwing stun grenades into the crowd. (Greg Nicolson)

A protestor stands on top of burning portable toilets outside the Union Buildings while President Zuma met student and university leaders inside. (Greg Nicolson)

A water canon rushes through the crowd at the Union Buildings. (Greg Nicolson)

Protestors on Friday continually attempted to breach the fence separating the Union Buildings from its gardens, creating a difficult time for police keeping them back. (Greg Nicolson)

For most of the day police used stun grenades and pepper spray to keep the hostile protesters back but in the afternoon they launched teargas. A recycling collector was caught up in the sting. (Greg Nicolson)

While a group of students were throwing stones at police and trying to get through the fence to the Union Buildings, others attempted peacefully to proceed past the barrier. (Greg Nicolson)

Incoming Wits SRC president Nompendulo Mkhatshwa leads a group of students outside the Union Buildings. (Greg Nicolson)

A protester in a green blanket, an obvious Marikana reference, sits on a tree at the Union Buildings. (Greg Nicolson)

A student holds his hands up in front of police, who fired teargas, rubber bullets and stun grenades in response to the protest on Friday. (Greg Nicolson)

A Wits student on the bus travels to the Union Buildings march against fee increases. (Siboniso Mncube)

A protester at the Union Buildings throws a rock at the police. (Siboniso Mncube)

Two demonstrators outside the Union Buildings take cover in the bushes from the teargas. (Siboniso Mncube)

While police withheld from firing rubber bullets for most of the day, in the afternoon they shot at protesters. This man displays his rubber bullet wound. (Siboniso Mncube)



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