Treasury reviewing Zuma's free higher education proposal

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President Jacob Zuma has announced that government will subsidise free higher education for poor and working class students.

"The proposal will also be considered by the ministers' committee on the budget (MinComBud) and the presidential fiscal committee".

♦Poor first year students at South African universities would be fully supported through government grants not loans.

Zuma made the announcement after he released the report of the Commission of Inquiry into the feasibility of making higher education and training fee-free in South Africa in November.

This comes after Zuma announced in a statement that the new definition for poor and working-class students is now a combined annual income of up to R350000.

Wits' Adam Habib said vice-chancellor met with the Department of Higher Education and training (DHET) to discuss 2018 fee increases for poor households but they did not discuss free education.


These loans would be guaranteed by the government.

♦ Households earning less than R350 000 a year will get free tertiary education.

"All poor and working class South African students enrolled at public TVET colleges will be funded through grants not loans".

"For TVET colleges‚ full cost of study will include tuition fee‚ prescribed study material‚ meals‚ accommodation‚ and/or transport".

Sizwe Nxasana, the chairman of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), confirmed during a Talk Radio 702 interview this morning that his organisation does not have information on how free education will be funded.

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