The University of Johannesburg said on Thursday it had received a R10-million donation from Absa to help those students who struggle to pay for their tuition fees.
The donation was secured to support students who are in the so-called “missing middle” and do not qualify for funding from the National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).
UJ vice-chancellor Ihron Rensburg said the university supported the implementation of free education for the poor and urged other companies to contribute and help struggling students.
“We are deeply grateful to business and industry, and the public sector for their timely response and generous contributions that have helped UJ reach its goals for the missing middle. However, I want to make a further appeal, to other corporations for contributions to this vital cause. By giving generously to the ‘missing middle’ campaign, we are collectively building, shaping and empowering the country’s future leaders,” said Rensburg.
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“It is important for the students to acknowledge the commitment and the contribution which the private sector is already making towards the funding of higher education, which Absa has demonstrated with this donation.”
The “missing middle” are those students who fall above the NSFAS threshold but also cannot afford higher education.
For the past six weeks, thousands of students have abandoned classes – with end-of-year exams looming – and have instead held protests to demand free higher education.
The #FeesMustFall campaign has been marred by violence, death, injuries and destruction of property as running battles between the protesting students and police have continued at campuses across the country.
– African News Agency