The students were rounded up on Nangwenya road where they had gathered with a view to matching to the ministry of Education.
Lusaka Province police chief, Wasakaza Ngâ€™uni, confirmed the arrests and that the students had been charged for riotous behaviour and conduct likely to cause a breach of peace.
A Times team that went to Lusaka Central police station found students being taken to the police station in open vans. Those arrested were 37 males and 15 females. They would appear in court soon.
Quick action by Police officers in full riot gear in the early hours of yesterday stopped the students from blocking motorists on the Great East road as they protested over a decision by management asking them to pay 50 per cent per semester before commencing lectures.
UNZA management has also issued a memorandum directing students to pay the other 50 per cent in the middle of the semester to reduce on cases of students failing to complete their payments before completing their programmes.
Yesterday morning students blocked the road leading to the campus with rocks and tree branches and also wrote abusive grafiti on the road.
The students also blocked the entrance leading to the campus with huge stones to stop motorists driving in and out of the institution while police in riot gear kept vigil.
Police officers led by Mr Ngâ€™uni who were deployed in some locations near the campus quickly moved in to seal off the campus.
Police later relocated to UNZA entrance as the protesting students set up bonfires and continued chanting anti-management slogans.
Mr Ngâ€™uni said police action was in the interest of the motorists and other road users and that police would continue to monitor the situation.
He also warned that police would not hesitate to move into the campus if the situation deteriorated.
Last week students chanting anti- management slogans set fire at the â€˜monk squareâ€™ symbolising the sign of mourning following a decision by University of Zambia Lecturers and Researchers Union (UNZALARU) to down tools pressing for better conditions of service.
Students also boycotted classes yesterday while a number of others were seen loitering within the campus.
UNZA spokesperson, Mulenga Musepa said it was saddening that the students reacted in such a manner and appealed for better ways of airing their grievances.
Mr Musepa said during the meeting which was called by management after issuing a memorandum, it was decided that cleaning of some areas at the campus would not be done on a daily basis except for ablution blocks.
But some students said that they were saddened with the decision by management to allow students to only use the library from 08:00 hours to 17:00 hours.
They said in most cases, students were busy with assignments in the morning and afternoon and wondered what time would be there for studying. They appealed to management to rescind the decision.
But sources said the decision to close the library at 17:00 hours was aimed at reducing payment of overtime for workers.