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NSFAS Uses Universities Again For Student Payments



NSFAS Uses Universities Again For Student Payments

NSFAS Uses Universities Again For Student Payments. The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is facing a crucial challenge as its direct payment system encounters significant setbacks. In response to the system’s failure, NSFAS is reverting to utilizing universities as intermediaries for disbursing funds to students.

This move comes after extensive efforts to establish an efficient direct payment system, which ultimately proved unsuccessful. With leadership changes and ongoing uncertainties, NSFAS finds itself in a state of flux, grappling with the task of ensuring financial aid reaches its beneficiaries.

NSFAS Struggle with Direct Payment System

NSFAS embarked on a journey in 2023 to streamline its operations by implementing a direct payment system, aimed at bypassing universities and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges in the distribution of student funding.

However, this initiative encountered numerous hurdles, culminating in its failure to meet the intended objectives. Despite considerable investments and efforts, the direct payment system did not deliver the anticipated outcomes, leaving NSFAS to explore alternative avenues for disbursing financial aid.

Return To University Intermediaries

In response to the shortcomings of the direct payment system, NSFAS has reverted to utilizing universities as intermediaries for distributing funds to student beneficiaries. This marks a significant shift from the organization’s previous efforts to minimize university involvement in the funding process.


The decision to return to universities reflects NSFAS’s urgent need to ensure timely disbursement of financial assistance amidst the system’s failure.

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Leadership Crisis And Uncertainties

NSFAS’s transition back to universities for student payments coincides with a period of leadership turmoil within the organization. The departure of the CEO and board chairperson amid corruption allegations has added to the challenges facing NSFAS. The leadership vacuum further exacerbates uncertainties surrounding the scheme’s future direction and its ability to effectively manage student funding.

Fintech Firms Under Scrutiny

Amidst the upheaval, NSFAS has also announced its intention to sever ties with the four fintech companies responsible for facilitating direct payments to students.

This decision underscores the scheme’s dissatisfaction with the performance of these firms and its commitment to exploring alternative solutions. By parting ways with the fintech companies, NSFAS seeks to address the shortcomings of the direct payment system and restore confidence in its ability to fulfill its mandate.


The National Student Financial Aid Scheme’s reliance on universities for student payments highlights the challenges it faces in implementing an effective funding distribution system.


As NSFAS navigates through leadership changes and operational uncertainties, the organization remains committed to ensuring that financial aid reaches its intended recipients.

By reevaluating its strategies and partnerships, NSFAS strives to overcome obstacles and fulfill its crucial role in supporting students’ access to higher education.

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