Acting Public Protector visits TUT’s Mbombela Campus

5 May 2021

Early in 2021, acting Public Protector, Advocate Kholeka Gcaleka, commenced on a series of visits to a number of South African higher education institutions, including TUT’s Mbombela Campus. This initiative forms part of an intervention to address access to tertiary education and other urgent university issues. 

Dr Kenneth Netshiombo, Campus Rector, Mbombela Campus and Prof Herbert Maserumule, Executive Dean, Faculty of Humanities, together with the Campus Management Committee (CMC) and the Campus Student Representative Council (CSRS) hosted Adv Gcaleka and her staff at the Campus Student Centre towards the end of March.  

These university visits come at a time when the issues of access as well as free access to education as well as the impact of the Corona virus pandemic on education, have once again surfaced. In 2020, her office received many complaints relating to the failure of NSFAS to pay for tuition, inadequate allowances for study material and non-payment of living allowances.

“In my position as Acting Public Protector, I have committed to visit institutions and speak to various stakeholders at these institutions in an attempt to bring parties together, hear what the challenges are and find solutions. We need to continue transforming institutions into effective and prosperous places of learning, not only for current students but for coming generations too,” Adv Gcaleka said.

Once she and her team have visited all the identified universities, reports containing proposed solutions on the way forward, will be formulated to ensure that challenges in terms of funding, and other university matters are addressed. 

In addition to NSFAS issues, the Campus Student Leadership raised matters related to accommodation, residences, online learning, application and registration procedures.

Prior to her day spent at TUT, Adv Gcaleka earlier visited the University of Venda, University of the Free State and University of Pretoria. The university visits will soon be followed by visits to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions.

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