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Blame Nzimande, not Wits: DA

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Poor Wits students should lay blame for high university fees at Blade Nzimande’s door, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said on Saturday.

In a statement, DA leader Mmusi Maimane welcomed the Wits University decision to suspend its hiked fees, but said it would not “fix the ANC government’s failure to provide adequate funding to our nation’s universities – which is at the heart of these protests”.

“When universities do not get enough funding and support from the department of higher education, and when NSFAS – which should be funding every poor South African student who gets accepted into university – is short of R51bn, the ANC demonstrates that it doesn’t care about poor students. And equipping them with what they need to find employment.

“The truth is that students should be protesting outside the office of minister Blade Nzimande himself. The funding of higher education in South Africa is in a mess. [It] is only serving to make life even more difficult for the country’s youth who are bearing the brunt of a sluggish economy and a lack of job opportunities.”

Maimane added that if President Jacob Zuma was serious about creating opportunities for young South Africans, he needed to expedite “the establishment and work of the higher education task team to find extra funding for tertiary education”. He further stated that the national treasury needed to be part of the task team. News24

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