The Zimbabwe students’ union is making war, not love, on a new code of conduct banning students from kissing on campus at the country’s top university.
In a circular displayed at halls of residence, authorities at the University of Zimbabwe said students “caught in any intimate position such as kissing or having sex in public places” would be punished.
The university also barred resident students from bringing members of the opposite sex to their hostels and “loitering in dark places outside the sports pavilion or lecture venues”.
Student leader Gilbert Mutubuki said students would resist the restrictions, introduced two weeks ago.
“We are against these rules which we view as archaic, repressive and evil,” said Mutubuki, president of the Zimbabwe National Students Union.
“We are urging students to resist the rules. These rules reduce the university to a primary school. The authorities need to be reminded that this is an institute for adults who are mature.”
He said the new regulations, which also bar students from accommodating non-resident colleagues, were meant to curtail students’ freedom of assembly.
“We believe these are security measures are meant to limit students from associating.”
Until Zimbabwe introduced tough security laws, university students often staged anti-government protests, sometimes joining forces with trade unions and rights groups.