HIGHER Education and Training Minister Naledi Pandor has appealed to confirmed National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) beneficiaries to come forward and sign their Schedule of Particulars (SOP).
Pandor said that in the first eight days of the administration, R2.2 billion has been disbursed, with 43 925 students signing outstanding SOPs and confirmed for payment.
“In terms of outstanding SOPs, the largest number of unsigned contracts is that of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) college students, at over 30 000 TVET college students who are confirmed beneficiaries have not signed and not received their funds. We appeal to them to come forward,” Pandor said.
Students at the University of South Africa (UNISA) have also been paid the outstanding book allowances.
The Minister reported that there has been positive progress in the first two weeks of the opening of the 2019 NSFAS applications process.
She said that links have been re-established with all institutions and institution heads, and student leaders have played a critical role in communicating with students.
“Over 50 NSFAS staff have been deployed to be on site at institutions to ensure resolution of outstanding issues. In the process, additional 50 000 students have been identified as falling within the criteria for NSFAS support,” Pandor said.
She emphasised that immediate work of NSFAS is close out of 2017 and 2018, and opening 2019 applications successfully.