As hundreds of students demonstrated following the death of their colleague in the GUC parking lot, the university has suspended classes as condolences pour in from across the country.
On Tuesday, hundreds of GUC students gathered on campus to commemorate and protest the death of their fallen colleague, Yara Tarek Negm, forcing the university to announce the suspension of classes for three days.
The tragedy unfolded on Monday, when 19-year old engineering student Yara Tarak Negm was struck by a reversing bus on the GUC parking lot. The first eyewitness reports received here at CairoScene claimed that she was crushed between two buses, however since then, several supposed eyewitnesses have left comments on our website and contacting us via social media, saying that Yara wasn’t paying attention and was looking at her phone when the slow moving bus hit her; but even these claims were disputed.
The truth of matter is that they way she was struck has no bearing on the outcome, and whatever you choose believe doesn’t change the fact that she died an untimely death. The real debate shouldn’t be how she was hit, but whether or not there are measures that can be taken to avoid a similar tragedy.
Feeling the same way, the GUC Students Union decided to lead a sit-in the parking area blocking the movements of buses and boycotting classes, demanding the GUC administration hold accountable the parking and drivers departments, and to pressure them into implementing proper inspections for the drivers and parking attendants they hire. Talking to Ahram online, Mai El-Belbesy, the vice head of the Student Union, claims that “Already in the past we had incidents of students being hit by university buses in the parking lot, including broken arms and legs, but this time a woman was killed.”
Originally, the university planned to continue on as normal but as pressured mounted, the administration that it would suspend classes for three days, and student activities for two weeks. The university also mentioned that they had informed Negm’s family, who are sadly out of the country, that the driver has been handed over to police for questioning, resulting in the New Cairo prosecution to hold the suspected driver for four days pending investigation.
Yara's funeral was held on Tuesday and was attended by some students, one of which put this photo on Twitter. At this time we reiterate that our thoughts and prayers are with the family. Our hope is that this accident instills new measures that better manages the parking lot and hires safer drivers, while at the same time raising awareness among students that they should pay more attention on roads and in the parking lot.
If you want to share your condolences, many have taken to using #YaraTarek