At least 7 946 students failed to acquire Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund(NSFAF) funding for the 2023 academic year.
According to NSFAF Acting Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Kandume, the fund received 30 124 applications however only 22 179 applications were eligible for funding.
Compared to last year, the fund has increased the number of students it will be funding by 17 Percent.
Kandume said the applications were rejected as some applicants did not adhere to the specifications and some applied despite not meeting the academic requirements of the fund.
“Like any other application, some applications did not meet the requirements. Some of the applicants’ parental income exceed the maximum income bracket and some applied even though they did not meet the fund’s academic requirements. Therefore the reasons for the rejected applications are quite many. There are also those that did not submit their required credentials,” he said.
Kandume added that the fund relies on information provided by applicants to determine funding eligibility.
“I must emphasise here that to asses funding eligibility, the fund is reliant on information provided by applicants themselves, with exception of academic records that we get directly from the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture. Thus, it is important that applicants provide accurate information to enable timely assessment of loan applications,” added Kandume
Moreover, Kandume announced that the fund will commence with monthly payment for non-tuition fees this year, adding that the first payout will be made next month.
The eligible students were allocated N$ 17 000 of non-tuition fees.
Speaking on behalf of the Minister of Higher Education, Technology and Innovation Itah Kandjii-Murangi, Deputy Executive Director in the Ministry, Raimo Naanda urged students awarded contracts to sign their award contracts.
“Your acceptance of the NSFAF award is only complete when you affix your signature to the NSFAF contract form. Without your signature, you will forfeit the NSFAF award. I am reliably informed that there is deadline to that process,”Naanda said.
“Given the new discoveries and developments in our country, I hope that the identification and selection of the 2023 awarded students were not informed only by the long-standing priority fields of study, but also too cognizant of the new knowledge and skillsets required to exploit the new natural resources discoveries in our country,” Naanda added.
Last year it was announced the government has spent nearly N$7 billion between 2018 and 2022 on 70 233 students who were provided with financial assistance by NSFAF.