Protesting TUT students vow not to backdown until demands are met

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Students at the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) say they will continue with their protest until Higher Education Minister, Blade Nzimande, attends to their demands.

Students have again barricaded the entrance to the TUT main campus in Pretoria West.

They are protesting over the implementation of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) new eZaga application that facilitates monthly allowances to students.

They say the introduction of the digital banking service last month has been a challenge, with many students yet to receive their June and July allowances.

NSFAS also allegedly hired service providers without the required banking licenses to pay out student allowances at excessive rates.

NSFAS has not been available for comment.

The institution was forced to suspend academic activities on Monday with talks scheduled between TUT management and student representatives.

SRC President, Keamogetswe Masike, says: “Currently, many of our students are defunded and (for) no particular reasons. Then the exorbitant charges that the company charges. So, it’s just the process of the national direct payment that they are just giving us a lot of problems. However, because the university does not have control over the process, we just want to engage with the minister directly.”

TUT management says it is meeting with student representatives to try to resolve the matter.

University Spokesperson, Phaphama Tshisikhawe, says: “TUT is aware of the sporadic student protests at some of our campuses. Regarding the new NFSAS payment system. As we speak meetings are currently underway between management and student leaders to find a speedy viable and sustainable solution and also to restore normality at our campuses.”

Student Funding | TUT SRC grievances with new NSFAS payment method: