SAR’s Academic Freedom Monitoring Project investigates and reports attacks on higher education with the aim of raising awareness, generating advocacy, and increasing protection for scholars, students, and academic communities. Learn more.

Date of Incident: February 23, 2021

Attack Types: Imprisonment

Institution(s):Kimpa Vita University

Region & Country:Central Africa | Angola

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On February 23, 2021, police arrested at least four students during a protest at Kimpa Vita University (KVU). 

On May 4, 2020, President João Lourenço issued Presidential Decree No. 124/20, establishing the fee increase for the 2021 academic year. Several universities reportedly applied the increase immediately, nearly quadrupling tuition overnight.

Students gathered at KVU to demonstrate against the fee increase, as well as the low passing rate among students. Police reportedly arrested at least four of the protesters. 

Scholars at Risk is concerned about the arbitrary detention of students peacefully exercising the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly — conduct that is expressly protected by international human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Angola is a party. State authorities have an obligation to refrain from restricting or retaliating against the peaceful exercise of the rights to freedom of expression and assembly so long as they are exercised responsibly. In addition to the harm to the immediate victims, detentions in response to peaceful student expression undermine academic freedom and democratic society generally.

*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED).—ha-relatos-de-detencoes-de-estudantes-101015.html