18 February 2013

South Africa: Zuma Must Answer for Broken Promises of Education Trust

President Jacob Zuma has hit back at opposition parties, who criticized him for his lacklustre speech, on the last day of debate of the State of the ... ( Resource: Jacob Zuma's Day at the State of Nation Debate )

press release

I will be submitting parliamentary questions to request answers on the lack of tuition payments by the Jacob Zuma RDP Education Trust for students who were promised bursaries by the Trust.

It is reported that students have been forced to drop out of university, incur huge debts or desperately seek alternate sources of funding because the money promised to them by the Trust is not being paid out. This is unacceptable.

The President and the Trust must be held accountable, as the Trust is a beneficiary of the Presidential Address Golf Challenge (PAGC), an event that is hosted by the Ministry of Public Service and Administration and funded by state resources. The benefit punted to sponsors is an opportunity to network with government and the public sector.

The event raised an estimated R7 million, yet these funds do not appear to be going to the students who benefit from the Trust. Questions therefore need to be asked on where the money is going.

I will be writing to the Presidency to determine (i) the reasons for the delay in payment of bursary funding, (ii) what processes are in place to ensure payments are made timeously and (iii) what mechanisms are in place to ensure that the substantial money raised by the Trust is being channelled solely to the benefit of bursary holders.

The President should not use his position and influence for the benefit of his Trust and then break promises to the students it is supposed to assist.

Annelie Lotriet, Shadow Minister of Higher Education and Training

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