WINDHOEK - The Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) board of directors that has been tasked to oversee the process of re-integrating the fund back into the ministry of higher education is expected to soon provide a report after consultations with key stakeholders on the progress are made.
The Minister of Higher Education, Training and Innovation, Dr Itah Kandjii-Murangi late last year said NSFAF should become a directorate within the ministry to ensure transparency in the allocation of student financial assistance.
The permanent secretary in the higher education ministry Alfred van Kent, in an interview with New Era, said it should be noted that the NSFAF is a public enterprise established by an Act of Parliament, with a board of directors that is accountable for the sound governance and affairs of the institution.
With regard to the decision to integrate NSFAF to the ministry, he said there is currently a process underway that requires extensive consultation with various stakeholders to ensure that due process is followed and issues of concern are adequately addressed.
“The NSFAF board was tasked to oversee the process and to provide a report after consultations,” he noted.
The new board consists of Jerome Mutumba(chairperson), Dr Christina Swart-Opperman (deputy chairperson), Stephen Tjiuoro, Dr Isak Neema, Adda Angula, Natascha Cheikhyoussef, Ananias Abner and Tulimeke Munyika.
Asked when the nation should expect this re-integration to become a reality, Van Kent said it would be very difficult at this stage to explicitly give a date.
When asked whether any job losses were anticipated as a result of the exercise, he responded: “We do not anticipate any job losses with the integration process. What we would like to see is the enhancement and streamlining of the NSFAF processes to improve operational efficiencies and effectiveness.”
On July 30, NSFAF placed a tender advert in the media regarding the study of the viability to re-integrate NSFAF into the ministry.