Aid fund to reimburse students

2013-11-15 00:00

THE National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is very determined to reimburse students “short-changed” since the 1990s due to an accounting system error.

So determined are they to set the record straight, that they even paid one recipient back the R9,79 that was overcharged.

Explaining how the error occurred, Lauren Vanacore of NSFAS told The Witness that when interest exceeds the capital amount of the student loan, interest should stop running.

“However, the old NSFAS accounting system continued to run interest in excess of the capital amount.”

This caused some students to be overcharged.

She said once the matter came to light in a review ordered by Higher Education and Training Minister Dr Blade Nzimande, all loan balances were recalculated and anyone who had overpaid will be refunded.

She said NSFAS now has a new loan management system that prevents miscalculations.

The financial aid body has already refunded 13 341 students.

It has not been an easy ride to track all the students because many of them have changed their contact details, Vanacore said.

The highest refund paid was R39 080,34 and the lowest refund paid was R9,79, she said.

NSFAS said all students who have repaid their loans should contact them at info@nsfas.org.za to verify if they qualify for refunds.

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