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Treasury waiting on Zuma for direction on fees commission's findings

The Heher Commission has found that the state doesn’t have the financial muscle to provide free education for all.

FILE: President Jacob Zuma reads through papers ahead of an address. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - While President Jacob Zuma has released the much anticipated fees commission report, South Africans will have to wait a while longer to find out how government plans to address the funding crisis at institutions of higher learning.

The Heher Commission has found that the state doesn’t have the financial muscle to provide free education for all.

The over 700-page document has given great focus on the expansion of TVET institutions, suggesting that R50 billion should be poured into their development.

The Heher Commission has strongly recommended that R50 billion to fund TVET colleges should come from the surplus from the Unemployment Insurance Fund which is said to be sitting at nearly a R100 billion.

It has suggested that a cost sharing model be established between the state and commercial banks to fund university students.

In implementing this model, the commission has recommended that the existing National Student Financial Aid Scheme (Nsfas) model be replaced by a new income contingency loan system.

Treasury’s Mayihlome Tshwte says that they are waiting on Zuma to give them direction regarding the commission’s findings before giving a formal response.

It remains to be seen when or even if the president will implement the commission’s recommendations.