Student Union Calls For Payment Of Nsfas Allowances

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One South African university has been rocked by student protests over the last week. The protests resulted in buildings at the university’s campus being torched while non-protesting students opted to leave the university’s campus.

 


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The University of Limpopo (UL) says despite the protests that took place over the past week, the institution remained operational and continued delivering its academic programme.

On Wednesday 14 September 2022, buildings at the UL’s Mankweng campus were torched by protesting students. The institution said the delays in allowance payments were caused by the failure of students and landlords to submit lease agreements.

UL’s communications director Victor Kgomo-e-swana said students who started the protest were against the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (Nsfas) directly paying landlords of student accommodation.

They added that Nsfas sent a team to the university with the aim of resolving the matter.

South African Union of Students (SAUS) says students spent several months calling for the institution to pay off-campus student accommodation allowances. However, these calls were ignored, ultimately leaving students without a safe place to stay.

“The university shunned the endless calls from students to pay out these accommodation allowances, and when the students justifiably took to the streets to effectively demand the protection of their constitutional rights, they then were met with intimidation, violence and victimisation,” declared SAUS.

The union says Nsfas is directly responsible for the destruction at the university’s Mankweng campus. They accused the bursary scheme of abdicating their duty by requiring institutions to pay allowances instead of distributing allowances to students directly.

SAUS has called on the university and Nsfas to ensure that the students receive their allowances.

 

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