Government must help universities pay for upkeep - Msimanga

2016-09-21 09:26
Solly Msimanga. (Karabo Ngoepe, News24)

Solly Msimanga. (Karabo Ngoepe, News24)

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2016-08-20 10:17

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Pretoria - Government must help universities maintain their infrastructure to mitigate against rising costs, Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga says.

“Government needs to look at how they subsidise the running of universities, because some of the costs that universities are pushing down to students are the maintenance of buildings, the upkeep of facilities,” Msimanga told News24 on Tuesday.

He suggested the government use its expanded public works programme to help with this so that maintenance did not become the universities’ expense.

“Maybe that can go a long way in assisting as well. There are a number of ways in which we can assist our young brothers and sisters.”

On Monday, Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande gave universities the freedom to determine their own fee increases for 2017, but capped this at 8%, for those students who could afford it.

Students at several universities around the country subsequently began protesting, demanding no increases and free tertiary education.

Msimanga said the fee increases could have been handled better. A blanket approach that would also exempt those who could afford university education from paying for it would not work.

Government needed to first look at subsidising the most needy, and then ensure there was no large increase for those who could afford it.

He said government should be careful not to push those who could afford tertiary education into a corner where they could no longer pay.

Read more on:    solly msimanga  |  university fees

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