VIEW: Manamela impressed by the progress of NSFAS

Cape Town – Deputy Minister for Higher Education and Training Buti Manamela was pleased with the progress made by the National Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) after he visited his office.

"We received half a million applications and 430000 of them have already been processed," he said. He said it was essential that NSFAS solved the backlog of students who had not received their allowances.

NSFAS administrator Dr. ir. Randall Carolissen told an educational party that his priority in his first 10 days was with the plan to catch up.

"The recently improved online application system, which was opened on Monday, makes it possible that every applicant can be considered with the utmost care and a lot of attention is paid to the evaluation of each application", says Carolissen.

"The opening of the 2019 applications has always been a priority and we must ensure that the Minister is satisfied with our progress in the 2017 and 2018 backlog before opening the window," he said.

The Education for Social Justice Foundation welcomed the opening of the application process for new students and said that Parliament's portfolio committee for higher education should carry out a verification process to determine whether NSFAS had paid all outstanding money to students for 2017 and 2018.

Vice-President Hendrick Makaneta said: "The government has the duty to protect students from obstacles such as academic and financial exclusions, some of which take place due to inadequacy and poor management of available resources by bodies such as NSFAS."

The foundation said that it would ask the portfolio committee to do hands-on by ensuring that the minister of higher education Naledi Pandor and the new NSFAS administrator appear in Parliament before the end of the year to assure the committee that all systems are ready for next year.

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Cape Argus

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