WATCH | Natasha Thahane clears the air on R1 million bursary

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Natasha Thahane says that she didn't receive R1 million from the government to pursue her studies abroad.
Natasha Thahane says that she didn't receive R1 million from the government to pursue her studies abroad.
Oupa Bopape/Galloimages

When a clip of her interview on MacG's Podcast & Chill went viral, it wasn't because of the work she had been doing, the conversations around friendships or even her relationship. 

It was because of a subject that South Africans are passionate about - access to education and funding. 

Actress Natasha Thahane was under fire after mentioning getting a bursary from the department of arts and culture in an interview with podcaster MacG. 

In the clip, she claimed to have received R1 million from the government to pursue her studies at the New York Film Academy in 2017.

She told MacG's Podcast & Chill that she reached out to several funders, including the Barack Obama Foundation, but only received help after talking to former speaker Baleka Mbete. 

South Africans took to social media to voice their displeasure, accusing government of preferential treatment and corruption.  

Taking to her Twitter account to address the corruption allegations against Baleka Mbete and the Department of Arts ad Culture, Natasha says that she doesn’t have a personal relationship with the former speaker and that she filled out an application form like everyone else.

“I did not receive R1 million from Mam Baleka Mbete or the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture. If you listen to the interview, you will realise it was taken out of context. Before I go through the process, I would like to profusely apologise to Mam Baleka Mbete and the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture as I spoke as if I have a personal relationship with her which I don’t.”

Natasha says that Baleka was at a meeting in the same building as her when she (Natasha) approached her and notified her that she had been accepted to study at the New York Film Academy and asked for advice regarding funding.

She says she was advised by Baleka to explore the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture as they have funding opportunities.

“She did not make any calls on my behalf, and she did not send any emails on my behalf.

Read more | Natasha Thahane talks football, dating Lorch and her future plans

“I sent through my proposal and application to the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture and to other funding organisations. And I received communication that my funding had been accepted.”

According to Natasha, she only received R350 000 for the funding of her first semester and R 315 000 was paid out front while R35000 was only paid after seeing her academic performance.

She says that her intentions for sharing that information were to highlight that she did not get to where she is on her own and she appreciates the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture for helping her achieve her goal of studying abroad.

Watch full clip here: 


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