Over R500m made in NSFAS overpayments

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Cape Town – The Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu has found that the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) did not take effective steps to prevent irregular expenditure as required by the Public Finance Management Act.

This happened as NSFAS made overpayments totalling R503.34 million to students above the amounts stipulated in the loan agreements.

In an annual report tabled to Parliament last week, NSFAS disclosed R303.547m in irregular expenditure in the 2017-18 financial year.

The excess payments and irregular payments were made when Sizwe Nxasana, who resigned in August, was the chairperson of the board.

Nxasana was brought onto the board in August 2015 as the student scheme battled for three financial years to meet its own target of an unqualified audit opinion with findings.

In the year under review, NSFAS obtained a qualified audit opinion with findings – regressing from the unqualified audit opinion of the prior year.(read full story)

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