The University of Pretoria (UP) is aware of concerns raised by students funded by NSFAS regarding the payment of allowances.
UP members of staff are currently working around the clock, including evenings and weekends, to process payments of allowances to students who are funded by NSFAS. We have employed additional staff and have redeployed others to assist with the processing.
Universities received instructions from the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) at a very late stage to not pay allowances via third parties, but to rather make direct deposits into students’ bank accounts. This followed a meeting between student representatives and DHET representatives, at which students requested that funds be paid directly into students’ bank accounts.
This means that, while the University was ready and prepared to pay the allowances via third parties, it had to abandon that process on short notice and make alternative arrangements to pay students directly. Consequently, approximately 9 000 students had to first complete pay-out forms and provide the necessary supporting documentation. These forms then needed to be captured, processed and validated on the system and then approved before students could receive the funds.
This is a time-consuming process, but students will be paid their allowances as soon as these have been processed. Approximately 6 000 students’ allowances have already been processed.
NSFAS-funded students who chose to receive their book allowance via the Fundi card will receive their money sooner than those opting for cash payments in their bank accounts, as these are quicker to process.
Students who choose to receive cash payouts will be required to submit a letter to their nearest Financial Aid Office to request that the full R5 000 allowance be reversed from the Fundi card to a cash payment in their bank accounts.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused and are doing everything in our power to ensure students are paid as quickly as possible.