Nzimande: Search for 2016 funding shortfall has begun

Some students have accepted 'no fee increases for 2016' while others push on for free education.

FILE: A police officer gets ready to fire rubber bullets as the crowd of students disperse during protests over proposed university fee increases at the Union Buildings in Pretoria on 23 October 2015. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande says the search has begun to fill the funding shortfall which will be created by universities not raising fees next year.

On Friday, President Jacob Zuma gave in to students' demands after days of protests and clashes with police at various institutions, and at the Union Buildings.

Some appear to have accepted this while others are still pushing for free education and not only a freeze on fee increases for 2016.

WATCH: The day fees 'fell'

Nzimande says he's done the best he can amidst the Fees Must Fall protests.

"Now we are discussing immediately where we are going to get the money for the shortfall that is going to be created by the fact that there is not going to be any fee increases in 2016. We are in discussions now with the minister of finance. Yesterday [Sunday] we gave our respective director generals a task to start looking."

LISTEN: _Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande says free education is feasible, provided that there is money. _

The minister was heavily criticised for excluding student leaders from earlier negotiations and for jokes he made about students, which were caught on camera.

WATCH: #FeesMustFall: Aerial view of Union Building chaos


Lectures will remain suspended at Wits University, where the institution's senate will meet today to discuss how to rescue this year's academic programme.

It's quiet on campus with not a student in sight at Senate House, where most of the meetings took place over the weekend.

It's understood students are divided about whether protest action should continue.

They do not want staff members to be outsourced, which is one of the demands which haven't yet been addressed.

The senate is meeting today to deliberate the impact of the last two weeks of protests and will make a call on when exams will be written.