The Namibia Students Financial Assistant Fund’s (NSFAF) Acting Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Kandume, has defended the fund’s decision not grant study loans to some students despite meeting funding requirements.
This comes after student unions expressed their disappointment in NSFAF and the Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation for rejecting some students who applied for study loans for the 2021 academic year.
Recently, both the ministry and NSFAF announced that 23 000 students applied for study loans for the 2021 academic year, of which 17 394 met funding criteria but only 16 185 will be funded.
Upon enquiry on Tuesday, Kandume said he understands the student unions’ disappointment, but they have to understand that there are various reasons for rejecting the students’ applications even though they obtained 25 points in Grade 12. The reasons, among others, he said is that some have salaries or parental salaries that are sufficient to fund their studies.
“Some students have been funded by NSFAF before and because they can’t find employment they choose to go for a second degree in a different field of study and they want to be funded again. Remember the funding is meant for needy students, so those that have been funded before or have salaries above a certain threshold will not qualify,” said Kandume.
The Students’ Union of Namibia (SUN) and the Namibia National Students Organisation (NANSO) said they have engaged both the ministry and NSFAF to reconsider the decision and avail funds to assist the rejected students, who then promised to look into the issue to see if the rejected names can be added to the list.
“As per the resolution from our joint meeting, NSFAF must provide clear reasons for rejection of students who are rejected without reason. Those found to be rejected without valid reasons after the verification process should strongly be reconsidered for funding,” they said.
Source: Namibia Press Agency