Former Wits student leader shot nine times

Shaeera Kalla is in hospital after she was shot by police

The former University of the Witwatersrand SRC leader is being treated in hospital after she was shot by police at least nine times with rubber bullets, the university confirmed on Thursday.

“We know she was shot nine times by police, [was] treated by campus health and taken to hospital,” said Wits spokesperson Shirona Patel.

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Patel said Wits campus control and private security do not have guns or rubber bullets.

“Several students were treated at the campus health and wellness centre and one with [a] dislocated leg was taken to hospital by the dean of students and campus nurse,” she said.

When News24 arrived at the Wits health clinic where Kalla was being treated earlier, she was lying on her stomach and was in tears.

Student leader Busisiwe Seabe also fainted at the clinic. She was seemingly short of breath.

Incoming Wits SRC deputy secretary-general Kaamil Alli told News24 that Kalla was shot by police unprovoked.

READ MORE: [WATCH] Police open fire on protesting Rhodes University students

An SABC journalist also said that Kalla was shot at close range.

Kalla was in tears while speaking to News24 and said she could not address the media at this stage.

About 200 students and workers were gathered at the university’s great hall under a strong police presence.

Student leader Vuyani Pambo addressed student and workers. There were five nyalas and a heavy presence of armed riot police.

Earlier, a group of protesting students disrupted classes at the university. Some protesters took test papers away from students who were writing and tore the test papers up.

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Patel said the group were disrupting classes at west campus and at the medical school and that security guards and police officers were attending to the matter.

At least one hundred books were damaged in a fire at the university on Wednesday afternoon, the institution said on Thursday.

The fire was started in the last aisle on the second floor of the Wartenweiler Library, Patel said in a statement.

“Security has determined that the fire was started with an accelerant or flammable substance, which may have been hidden in a bag found on the scene.”

The fire was extinguished and a high level investigation was underway by Wits Security and the police.

Patel said academic activities at the university were still underway.

– News24 Wire