LOVEDALE TVET COLLEGE STUDENTS PROTEST OVER MISSING R12.5M

By Anathi Wulushe

Over 40 Students including Student Representative Council (SRC) president Luyolo Mdledle were arrested on August 23 at Lovedale TVET College at the Qonce campus in an occurring protest which began on Friday 20 August, when students at Lovedale TVET College, Zwelitsha campus, took to protest following an internal memorandum issued by the acting principal of the college Mandla Manaka.

The internal memorandum stipulated the temporary closure of campuses and the suspension of classes as from Monday 23 August until further notice. All programmes across Alice campus, Qonce campus and Zwelitsha campus were suspended , only 191 National Certificate Vocational (NCV) students from Zwelitsha campus were allowed to continue with their examinations. Students staying at the college residence must vacate the residence by Saturday 21 August, except N1-N3 students who will be writing examinations.

With more than 5000 students receiving National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) bursary at Lovedale TVET College for both tuition and other various types of allowances such as travel and accommodation, as well as personal care. In the internal memorandum, the acting principal Mandla Makana stated that there were ‘no funds available’ due to a shortfall from NSFAS.

“On March 2021, the college received an allocation letter from NSFAS indicating that that the college will receive R42 million for bursary allowance. According to the calculations of the college this allocation was R12.5 million less than what was expected in terms of the funding grid that was approved” management said.

The management added in the memorandum that the shortfall was communicated immediately to NSFAS and Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) by the college and that the shortfall of funds resulted for the college allowance budget to deplete halfway through the year.

The Management and Student Representative Council are set to meet to discuss a way forward.

This story is a developing story.

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