Cape Town — The National treasury has announced that National Student Funding Aid Scheme (NSFAS) funding for tertiary education will be cut by approximately R14 billion.
NSFAS is suspected to have consulted Treasury on the matter, a decision that will leave thousands of students without financial aid, their spokesperson, Ishmael Mnisi told eNCA.
“What we know, with the capacity of the money that is currently in the hands of NSFAS, we are likely to fund a bit less than a million (students) but we will cross that bridge when we get there,” Mnisi said.
“We don’t know exactly the amount that will be appropriated but we also looking at mechanisms within the post-school and training sector to ensure that we maximise the amounts that we are currently having, and we can also reduce the losses we incurred by funding students that were not deserving of the funding,” he added.
Treasury announced a 10% budget cut (R13.7 billion) for Tertiary Education, how will this impact NSFAS & students?
Ishmael Mnisi (NSFAS Spokesperson):
It will affect NSFAS. We will use reserves. We planned to increase the funding, but with this shortfall might fund less. pic.twitter.com/pAdg4IUVWL
— Izwe Lethu (@LandNoli) December 7, 2023
According to EWN, the National Treasury’s decision is an attack on poor students who are seeking to further their studies. The Higher Education Department recently announced Treasury’s decision, which has left thousands anxious about not receiving money to study In the coming year. NSFAS has been under the spotlight for maladministration and not being able to manage its funds properly.
“You would have thought that at the very least of all their measures they would increase and not decrease spending on higher education so that we deal with issues of employability and unemployment,” said The South African Union of Students spokesperson, Asive Dlanjwa.
Compiled by Matthew Petersen