Some Central Johannesburg College students are still homeless and now staging a sit-in after being evicted from their residence.
They’ve been homeless since last week Tuesday and they say that’s because National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) didn’t pay for their accommodation.
Government’s announcement of close to a billion rand to settle historic student debt will not help them – that’s because their more immediate and pressing issue are accommodation and food.
Left stranded, with no shelter. And this has been their predicament since being evicted. That’s because NFSAS hasn’t fulfilled its financial obligations to landlords housing these students.
It’s been a tough week for a 24-year-old Sinentlantla Ndlangisa and many others who have nowhere to go.
“Sleeping on the floor is not good thing for everyone and we are supposed to go write. How can you study knowing that your body is tired? My body is tired. I can’t do anything because my body is tired. There is no food; they don’t even provide us with food. We have to collect those cents we have so that we can buy food. It’s painful, “says Ndlangisa.
These students say the evictions took them by surprise, “There was no notice, every student was there, they had to take all their clothes. We have nowhere to go. We don’t have food, we don’t have everything we don’t have shower, you go bath in a toilet, toilet is meant for toilet not for bathing.”
“We supposed to be in student accommodation, students were supposed to be studying so being here is something that is not good for as students, remember we going to write final exams as soon as possible as due as Wednesday and when students are here, at the end of the day, they going to fall,” says one of the students.
Acting Deputy Director General TVET Gerda Magnus says the department is aware of the issue.
“It is really not acceptable that students have to find refuge in an administrative building and of course we do want to try to correct that situation. So we have spoken with NSFAS this morning. We need to do a quick analysis of the students and the legitimacy of the accommodation claim by the service provider. We hope to do that within the next few days, it does involve that we have to check students details, students eligibility for NSFAS as well as confirmation that they did actually stay in the accommodation for the period the service provider is claiming,” says Magnus.
The students say, they will continue making the administrative building their home until NSFAS settles the debt so they can go back to their residence.
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