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NSFAS staff on strike, funding applications 'won't be affected'

Contract workers said they also wanted to be employed permanently.

FILE: Learners testing the NSFAS online application system. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Employees at the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) are on Monday striking over a range of issues, including payment of performance bonuses.

Contract workers said they also wanted to be employed permanently.

NSFAS said it had contingency measures in place to minimise the impact of the strike, adding that it did not envisage any hiccups regarding next year’s funding applications.

Workers union Nehawu’s Eric Kweleta said: “At the centre of this is the release of the 2018/2019 financial auditor’s report. We believe the auditor is deliberately delaying the release of the report because it will expose the corruption. We demand the end of the victimisation of Nehawu staff.”

The strike comes almost a week after matric exams got under way.

Over 790,000 pupils have registered for this year's final exams. The class of 2019 sat for their first major paper, English paper 1, on Wednesday morning.

Pupils were also affected when Eskom implemented load shedding, citing capacity constraints.

The exams will be conducted in nearly 7,000 centres across the country.

* ALSO READ: Bullets and books: The story of a Bonteheuwel matric

Nehawu is calling for a thorough investigation into operations at NSFAS.

Kweleta added: “The administrator is running the institution like a stokvel, hence we are going to submit a memorandum to the minister to ensure that this report is released and also ensure that they eradicate the corruption in the institution.”

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