The leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters‚ Julius Malema‚ has encouraged all those who could not attend university because of a lack of money‚ to go back to these institutions in January because education is now free.
In his year-end message to South Africans‚ Malema said it must be ensured that in 2018‚ all academically deserving students are admitted freely to South African universities and FET colleges.
“We call upon all those who passed matric extremely well in the past and found themselves as petrol attendants‚ retail or security workers because they couldn’t afford university fees to report at the academic institution of their choice next year.
“The EFF will be at the gates of all learning institutions to ensure that priority is not only given to those who can afford to pay‚” Malema said.
At the beginning of December‚ President Jacob Zuma announced that government will subsidise free higher education for poor and working class students.
In his statement Zuma said that the definition of poor and working class students will now refer to “currently enrolled TVET Colleges or university students from South African households with a combined annual income of up to R350‚000” for the 2018 academic year.
The higher education minister would revise this amount periodically in consultation with the finance minister.
Having amended the definition of poor and working class students‚ government would introduce fully subsidised free higher education and training for poor and working class South African undergraduate students‚ starting in 2018 with students in their first year of study at the country’s public universities‚ Zuma said.
“Students categorised as poor and working class‚ under the new definition‚ will be funded and supported through government grants not loans‚” Zuma said.
Malema said in 2018‚ health facilities should function better‚ particularly public hospitals.
He added his voice to the campaign against women and child abuse and the call for safety on the roads.
“We must join hands in 2018 to fight against abuse of women and children‚ in particular the girl child. We must unashamedly‚ and in a radical way‚ fight against patriarchal violence‚ rape and femicide from our homes to public spaces.
“Fellow Africans‚ we must be safe on the roads because the revolution needs us in 2018 and to all those who will be in festivities‚ please enjoy responsibly‚” Malema said.
By: Penwell Dlamini
Source: TMG Digital.