NSFAS pays R4.2bn to colleges and universities for students

Higher education minister Blade Nzimande says NSFAS will pay millions to tertiary institutions.
Higher education minister Blade Nzimande says NSFAS will pay millions to tertiary institutions.
Image: Rogan Ward.

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme has paid R4.2bn to institutions as an upfront payment.

Minister of higher education & training Blade Nzimande said the amount includes the second upfront payment of R677m which was paid to assist students with transport and accommodation during the registration period.

Nzimande said he was pleased with the report from the NSFAS administrator Dr Randall Carolissen on the contingency plans and disbursements of NSFAS student bursaries during the Covid-19 lockdown period.

He said, according to the report, the student financial aid scheme had  processed almost all the applications received to date, including the TVETs and university walk-ins received during the first quarter of 2020.

“NSFAS made provisional funding available to 448,038 university [students]  for this year’s academic programme and the scheme had received 350,289 registration records from institutions,” Nzimande said..

He said all the institutions were advised to disburse the allowances to all NSFAS-funded and registered students.

Nzimande said NSFAS made provisional funding available to 266,274 TVET students and they have already received 185,876 registrations.

“NSFAS has already made an upfront tuition to TVETs of R623-million which comprises 20% of the tuition allocation to colleges.  This money was meant to assist colleges with cashflow and waive registration fees for students,” Nzimande said.

Nziamnde said R549m had already been paid as an allowance to 147,663 students.

“Currently NSFAS is processing payments that will be disbursed to 102,950 students to the value of R316-million,” Nzimande said.

He said of the 131,032 TVET walk-in applications, 93,952 of the applications were financially eligible although 15,681 students have incomplete documents.

“However this setback will be followed up by the NSFAS contact centre. University walk-in applications received were 19,930. Of these applications, 6,147 applications have been assessed and are funding eligible,” Nzimande said.

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