150 Protesters Occupy Offices At Stanford
About 150 students occupied one of the administration buildings at Stanford University yesterday, demanding that the university's trustees agree to support all shareholder resolutions calling for U.S. corporate withdrawal from South Africa.
Exactly one year after 294 Stanford students were arrested for sitting in at the same building, members of campus antiapartheid groups occupied the offices but voted to leave at 4:30 when the trustees turned down their demands.
"They didn't think getting arrested was the best move at this point: they said they would think up more militant actions at a forum this evening, but they basically woffed out," an editor of the Stanford undergraduate newspaper said yesterday.
The Stanford Committee on Responsible Investment Policy, the student group that organized the sit-in as well as a noon protest rally, also held a forum last night to discuss the South African issue and possible actions to convince the university to push for complete corporate withdrawal from South Africa.
The trustees, who met in Los Angeles this afternoon, voted not to meet with students sitting-in on campus and not to agree to support all resolutions urging withdrawal.
Stanford has $125 million of a total portfolio of about $335 million invested in 59 firms operating in South Africa.
Last week the trustees voted to urge Phelps Dodge, a large U.S. mining firm, to leave South Africa, but turned down a similar resolution in Caltex, a subsidiary of the Texaco oil company.