FREE higher education has always been ANC policy because it is crucial to the expansion of access to economic opportunities for those students coming from poor and working class backgrounds, ANC Secretary General Ace Magashule said on Thursday.
Magashule was speaking in Johannesburg after receiving a memorandum of demands from Wits University students who protested outside the ANC’s headquarters on Thursday.
Wits University students are demanding that historical debt be erased and that all students be permitted to register and continue with their studies.
“Free higher education has always been the policy of the ANC, and any person who tells you it’s not, is not a member of the ANC. Education is a top priority of the ANC and government. On Wednesday the ANC’s national working committee (NWC) discussed the issue of funding for students and agreed this has to be prioritised,” said Magashule.
“Your struggle is our struggle. This is not the struggle for the EFF Student Command or SASCO. If you are an SRC leader, you are not leading the struggle for your party. You are leading the struggle for all students. The struggle for free education is a struggle for all university students across the country.”
Access to tertiary education remains an emotive issue in South Africa since the end of apartheid rule more than two decades ago, with children from mainly poor black households struggling to access limited funding for tuition through programmes such as the National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS
- Inside Education