Nzimande demands answers on R14m payout debacle

2017-08-31 20:31
Blade Nzimande (City Press)

Blade Nzimande (City Press)

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Johannesburg – Serious action should be taken against all those responsible for the"wholly unacceptable" payment of R14.1m into the account of a Walter Sisulu University student, Minister of Higher Education and Training, Blade Nzimande said on Thursday.

In a statement, he said he had instructed the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NFSAS) as well as his department to urgently get to the bottom of the matter. 

"We simply cannot afford these kinds of blunders involving tax payers’ money, whether they occur wittingly or unwittingly. This is why I am calling for a thorough investigation to establish the facts so that there is consequence management for those found responsible.

“Government is doing its best – within limited resources - to source funding to support children of all poor, working and middle class families in their quest to better their lives through skills acquisition.”

Intellimali, the company which facilitates student payments, said the respective student, who had since spent a portion of the money, faces legal action. She apparently spent R818 000 before the payment error was picked up in early August.

Also read: WSU student accidentally receives R14m NSFAS deposit, spends thousands

Nzimande however said that this action against the student was not enough.

“The company must also deal with the responsible employees.”

He explained that the error, apparently at the hands of Intellimali, occurred during a payment run to 3 500 students at the institution who are supported by NSFAS.

ANCYL Collins Chabani sub region spokesperson, Mj Wa Azania, however, said that it will be illogical for WSU to suspend or punish the student. 

“What we must be asking ourselves as black South African students from the less privileged class, the disadvantaged society and the historically oppressed is, 'How much does a black student need to survive in a university?'"

He added that the money was accidentally deposited to the student's account.

“It might be illegal to use it but it is logical for a student to use especially under the conditions black students are in now.”

He said that students were already receiving less than what they qualify for. 

Read more on:    nsfas  |  walter sisulu university  |  blade nzimande  |  university fees

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