University of Johannesburg pledges to assist poorer students with fees

(Picture: AFP)
(Picture: AFP)

Johannesburg - The University of Johannesburg on Sunday pledged to assist students who struggle with tuition costs – but warned that registration and student fees must be paid by those who can afford to do so.

The institution said in a statement that with the exception of students who qualified for aid from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), all students would be required to pay registration and student fees.

Support would also be provided to those who struggled with costs, via the University’s SRC Trust Fund.

"This has increased significantly for 2016 to accommodate up to 15 000 students – three times the number in past years – who cannot afford to pay their registration fees."

The university said students in debt must make payment arrangements.

"In respect of NSFAS qualifying students' historic debt, and in line with the President's announcement regarding the state's intention to cover such debt accumulated during 2013, 2014 and 2015, NSFAS qualifying students will not be required to pay outstanding debt accumulated during this period."

UJ also warned that no disruptions to the start of the academic year would be allowed.

"As always, and in line with the University’s student regulations, there will be room for peaceful protest."

The University is set to begin registration processes on Monday.

Almost 50 000 students are expected to partake in the new academic year.

"We are determined that learning and teaching will proceed as planned from the first day of term,  Professor Ihron Rensburg, vice chancellor and principal of the university said in the statement.

In October last year, universities across the country embarked on nationwide student protests against the rising cost of tertiary education.

The University of Johannesburg was one of the sites where the #feesmustfall campaign took root.

Towards the end of the month, President Jacob Zuma announced that university fees would not increase in 2016.

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