About 40 graduates from the Okiep TVET College near Springbok, in the Northern Cape, say they are still waiting for their qualification certificates, five years since completing their national diplomas.
They say they have been taken from pillar to post by the college and the Department of Higher Education, which is responsible for issuing their diplomas.
The graduates say this delay has hampered their chances of entering the job market.
Shannon Meyer (36) studied Human Resources at the Okiep TVET College for three years. Years later, she is now one of about 40 graduates who are still waiting for their certificates.
She says without a certificate to prove that she is a graduate, she cannot find work.
Meyer elaborates, “At the moment, it seems like I haven’t finished my studies. I only have my N6 certificate at the moment and I did complete my internship, which made me qualify for my diploma, but after five years, I still haven’t received anything from the department.”
Nathaly Hagglund (36) also studied Human Resources. She says she is disappointed that she cannot show her parents the much-awaited national diploma certificate.
“We all have a dream, and my dream was to receive my national diploma and tell my parents, ‘look here, I made you proud’. But it’s almost like you feel robbed from that.” adds Hagglund.
Attempts to get a response from the Department of Higher Education were unsuccessful despite a media inquiry sent to the department.