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Less students assisted as tuition fees increase, Parly hears

NSFAS briefed Parliament’s Higher Education Committee on its performance during in this financial year.

The Parliament of South Africa. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) says despite more funding, less students have been assisted due to the rising cost of tertiary education.

NSFAS today briefed Parliament's Higher Education Committee on its performance during in this financial year.

Recently, appointed NSFAS Chairperson Sizwe Nxasana said there are major challenges within the organisation, but improvements should also be highlighted.

Its CEO Msulwa Daca says R9 billion was disbursed in this financial year.

He says despite a R3 million increase compared to the last financial year, the scheme funded 1,300 fewer students this year.

"There has been a discussion around an increase in fees and what is going to be done to ensure that the whole system is sustainable."

Daca says the scheme has spent R31 billion over the last four years.

Committee members also posed tough questions over the poor student loan recovery rate.