THUGS must think twice before they attack woman students at Unisa.

Last week, students on the Sunnyside campus, Tshwane, were given pepper spray and taught self-defence skills.

This followed a session at which women were taught skills to fight off attackers.

University spokesman Tommy Huma said the move was in response to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call on South Africans to find solutions to gender-based violence in the country.

He said the university took students’ safety seriously.

University of South Africa Female Students holding the Pepper Spray as University (UNISA) has embarked on a National self defence initiative for its female students. Photo by Raymond Morare Photo by

“The recent scourge of gender-based violence in the country is a cause for concern.The university is doing its part to try to help students defend themselves,” he said.

Huma said the initiative was made possible through donations from university management.

Student Thato Makgatho (23) said she was grateful to have received pepper spray.

“This is a big step the university has taken. It’s a fact that women are in danger. We live in a sick society,” she said.

But Thato said she hoped she would never have to use the pepper spray.

Another student, Mashako Mnisi (34), said every woman should be able to defend herself.

“I will buy pepper spray for the women in my life and I will share the skills I’ve been taught.

“The situation is so bad that women need to be armed. We are at war,” she said.