By: Annakleta Haikera
The National African Students Association has called on the ministries of international relations and education to help students in Ukraine with all the necessities, not only those who benefit from NASFAF but all the 92 students studying in Ukraine.
NASA Regional, National & International Affairs Officer Eliud Mwaamenange said in his media release statements address the two ministries.
“The National African Students Association (NASA) has learnt with utmost concern about the development of the Russia -Ukraine conflict in the past few days.
“A lot of news about trending in local newspapers about the students studying in Ukraine. This was further supported by the video seen by NASA of about 20 students in a bus trying to escape unsafe Ukraine following Russia invasion.”
“We are therefore requesting upon the government through the Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation to consider helping our students during this difficult times immediately. This is an emergency that needs immediate attention. In the video seen by NASA, students are struggling with transport to escape Russia to neighbouring countries like Poland.”
He further went on to say, “The government should equally communicate to these neighbouring countries like Poland to give our students the refugee status by offering them accommodation and food during this difficult times because no one knows how long this conflict between Russia and Ukraine will last. It is a common understanding that not all students would afford transport and food during this difficult time because this is something that was not planned; however, we believe that the government can better help these students.”
“The government should equally get a way to be in contact with these students to hear what they have to say during this difficult time.
Whether true or not, these students alleged that NSFAF seems to be planning to help the students they fund while self-funded are left in the dark. We call upon the government to ensure safety and humanitarian help for all Namibian students studying in Ukraine. This is the time that our students needs you most. We are equally requesting upon the ministry of international relations to keep the students’ community and the public updated about the whereabouts and safety of
these 92 students because last time we heard that, only one student was reported to have arrived in Poland. I hope you find this letter in order.”
When approached for comment, NSFAF acting CEO Kennedy Kandume rubbished the allegations.
“It’s a good thing you’re saying they have alleged. Meaning they are saying something without facts. There is coordination between the international relations ministry to ensure that all Namibians are safely back in the country. That includes students funded by NSFAF and those that NSFAF does not fund,” he told The Villager.
“It’s a multifaceted effort from all the agencies, including MIRCO, higher education ministry, ourselves, the ministry of finance and other agencies.”