Shut Down Wits University to Prevent Covid-19 Spread
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As Covid-19 cases in South Africa and Gauteng in particular increase, it is our duty to take preventative action so that the situation does not escalate.
As countries such as Italy and China have discovered (in many cases too late), prevention is better than cure. Fatality rates and other key statistics are not yet confirmed and we cannot afford to be imprudent when deaths are occurring daily.
If Wits stays open, students, academic staff, groundstaff and other members of the community are at risk of contracting Covid-19 and either developing a severe case themselves or passing it on to their loved ones or any of the millions of immunocompromised, elderly, and very young citizens of South Africa.
It is not sufficient to continue with business as usual until the threat materialises.
We ask the senior executive team to confront the situation with the severity it is due and shut down the university for at least 2 weeks, reverting to an e-learning model until further notice. To prevent adverse impact on students in residences and students without access to internet and computers at home, labs could continue while all in-person lectures and other non-essential activities are suspended.
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