UCT students’ charges withdrawn

CAPE TIMES, FRANCESCA VILLETTE

Struggle hero Frank Chikane says he will frame a police document which indicated that his son be charged with high treason during a #FeesMustFall protest at Parliament last year.

Chikane called this a “very important historical piece of information”.

Kgotsi Chikane, along with 28 others – mostly UCT students – appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court yesterday, where charges of public violence and attending an illegal gathering were withdrawn.

Six of the accused, including Kgotsi, were initially held for high treason, but later charged with the two counts.

“These people were involved in what I call classical protest action, which democracy allows. Kgotsi has a piece of paper he was given that night that reads high treason.

“I said to my son he must frame that document; it is a very important historical piece of information,” said Chikane senior.

Among those charged were UCT vice-chancellor Max Price’s son Ilan, Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town Thabo Makgoba’s son Nyakallo, and student activist Chumani Maxwele, who spurred the Rhodes Must Fall campaign.

Maxwele said withdrawal of the charges proved a “beautiful victory”, and Illan said he was relieved.

Advocate Mustaque Holland, for 10 of the accused, said yesterday marked a great day inthe country’s democracy, while Advocate Chandre Brown, who represented six, said she was satisfied that the charges were withdrawn on humanitarian grounds.