THE Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) Acting Chief Executive Officer Kennedy Kandume says that in future, the fund will consider redirecting funds from less impactful fields of study such as business administration to areas with critical shortage such as medical specialisation.
Kandume points out that there are many courses that NSFAF finance that are not critically needed, citing the fact that in certain industries/fields, such as business administration, there is an over supply of graduates resulting in a high number of unemployed
“There are certain areas that we have overtrained,” he says, “but assessments still need to be done because, going forward, when we resume with aviation, we may temporarily stop funding for one field to focus on another that may not have been fully funded and lacking in the past.”
As a result, he mentions that after deliberations, they reallocate funds from one field of study to another where there is greater need and demand.
“It’s about time we evaluate what the funding has on a specific sector because we can’t keep funding government money indefinitely with no positive impact so we can focus on areas that matter,” he said.
He also emphasized the shortage of specialized medical professionals in Namibia, claiming that there is sometimes only one foreign national working at Katutura State Hospital as a specialist surgeon.
He stated that the Fourth Industrial Revolution is an area that needs to be looked into, even though there are areas that require a lot of financial invetment, but are absolutely necessary in the country.
Kandume observes that there is currently an influx of office administrators and educators on the streets unemployed, raising the question of how many more they will fund, how many are actually needed, and whether there is a shortage of skilled professionals in certain fields of study.
Meanwhile, NSFAF is entangled in an unfair dismissal legal battle with its CEO, Hilya Nghiwete, who was dismissed after being suspended for
nearly two years.
Kandume, when prompted if the millions spent on the “dual CEOs,” did not entertain the question, stating that he is only a caretaker, while the CEO is suspended and that the issues are completely unrelated.
The re-evaluation of funding follows the NSFAF’s temporary suspension
of aviation funding in January for the next three years.
The fund provided N$67 000 for aviation students and over the past years, the majority dropped out, as the amount was inadequate and only covered about the first two months of training.Thus, the decision not to fund new students, will ensure that those who were funded before are fully financed and this is expected to benefit 82 continuing