The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) board has received a report from Werksmans Attorneys looking into irregularities against CEO Andile Nongogo. Nongogo was placed on special leave in August 2023 after serious allegations were levelled against him.
NSFAS Board chairperson, Ernest Khosa received the report which will be presented to the NSFAS board in the coming week. Werksmans Attorneys were appointed to investigate claims of corruption against Nongogo and review NSFAS' procurement systems.
The investigation sought to determine whether these service providers are registered financial entities and whether there is a historical business and tender relationship between the CEO and the director of these companies.
The corruption allegations against Nongogo relate to their previous work with Services SETA (SSETA) and have raised concerns about potential improper practices in the awarding of bids for the direct payment of allowances from NSFAS.
The South African Union of Students (SAUS) welcomed NSFAS' commitment to investigating the allegations against its CEO. SAUS spokesperson, Asive Dlanjwa says while they were apprehensive about the competency of some of the service providers apportioned to pay NSFAS allowance, it was unclear if any foul play had occurred.
Several issues have been raised by students since the introduction of the direct payment system. This includes difficulty registering on the system, exorbitant bank charges and difficulty accessing their allowance money.
SAUS says while many students have been onboarded into the system allowing them access to the NSFAS bank account services, it's uncertain whether students have received their allowances. The student union says this is concerning especially during the upcoming exams.
Dlanjwa believes it's imperative that students receive their allowances on time, and hope all actions taken are in the best interest of the students. They emphasise the need for a fair and lawful process.
NSFAS has stated that it will not respond to media inquiries or interviews until the report is studied extensively by the board.