A number of students convened a meeting at the Namibia University of Science and Technology where they unanimously agreed that the Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) was making use of a policy document that was still at the draft stage.
The students from the Student Union of Namibia, the Landless People’s Movement Student Command Element and the National African Students Association have said the draft policy was not in favour of the interest of students and that he had been rejected by Nanso at its infancy.
“Nsfaf is using two policies, the policy that has been in existence and there is what we call now the draft policy. On that basis we wanted leaders to see exactly what policy Nsfaf is using. Which one is the legally binding document? But unfortunately, as we have gone through, we have seen they are using a draft policy. So, as student leaders from various institutions we have decided that we must have a workshop conference to look into the Nsfaf policy,” said Bernard Kavau of the Student Union of Namibia.
Nsfaf’s Olavi Hamwele has in the meantime asked for a list of questions to be emailed to him before he can respond on behalf of the institution.
Kavau said in the draft policy, the mature age requirement is reserved only for public institutions.
“It is disadvantaging a lot of students in that their accommodation and non-tuition fee has been reduced to N$17 000 and that is in the draft policy. It also states that some institutions will be funded based on a pre-determined rate. We felt that there was a need to look into this. A policy must address the best interests of the students,” he said.
Ambrosius Haingura from the National African Students Association labelled the policy discriminatory.
“We studied the document referred to as the policy and on the cover, it stipulates that the document is not for circulation. That shows that they implemented a draft. Why are they making use of an unimplemented document? We need a legal opinion on this. This policy is invalid,” he said.