South Africa’s Presidency announced that its task team has recommended that 2, 3 billion rand (154 million dollars) be been made available to address the shortfall of funding in the 2016 academic year.
This comes after the #FeesMustFall campaign where students from across South Africa protested for a 0 per cent increase in fees for the coming year.
A Presidential Task Team was set up two months ago to investigate the issue and report back on solutions to find to resolve the funding challenges faced at universities across the country.
“A short-term solution for the 0 per cent fee increment - 2.3 billion rand will be made available to address this shortfall. Government and the universities will make contributions towards addressing the shortfall.”
The statement also cites that the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) deficit had been valued at about 4.6 billion rand, with recommendations that 2.5 billion rand of it should come from South Africa’s fiscus after “reprioritisation”.
“This amount must be made available from the fiscus, in the form of loans to provide short-term debt relief to 71 753 students who were funded inadequately or were unable to access financial aid over the 2013 to 2015 academic years,” says the statement.
The rest will go to current students without funding in the 2016 academic year through NSFAS support.