Youth League wants higher education nationalised, and they’ve actually got a plan

Not to get too excited about this recent development, but it would seem as if the ANC Youth League has actually come up with a plan that – while maybe only in theory right now – could actually be to the benefit of… wait for it, the youth.

Between Youth League leader Collen Maine’s threats against the finance minister, the league’s obsession with putting Hlaudi Motsoeneng in parliament and it’s die-hard support for Jacob Zuma; you could have been forgiven for thinking that it was a youth organisation only in name.

Not so, after all, as it would have it the League’s secretary general Njabulo Nzuza, at Wednesday’s fees commission in Tshwane, put forward an actual plan of action on how to – according to him – nationalise higher education for the benefit of all.

According to Nzuza, leaving universities as independent higher educations, free to govern themselves, further entrenches the legacy of apartheid as it favours the wealthier students above the poor.

“Institutional autonomy is the first barrier to fee-free education as it places value on the basis of prestige in qualifications,” he said.

The League argued that, if you assume 70% of the 969 154 students currently enrolled at universities across SA can’t afford their fees, the government would need to free up R38.2 billion to give them all free education.

Nzuza, unexpectedly prepared, had brought some ideas along as to how a nationalised system would be able to carry the financial weight of free education including:

  • Increasing corporate tax
  • Increasing customs and excise duties on imported products
  • Introducing a household tax

Now, while taxing the South African populous might seem like a good idea to someone who’s salary is paid by none other than the taxpayer, Nzuza might find it a little more difficult to get the rest of the tax-paying public on board… especially considering the amount of goods we import just to feed ourselves.

In addition to taxing the population as much as is possible, the League believes that only the poor should have free access to nationalised institutions and that the rest must pay normal fees for what would essentially have become a state service… good luck with that.

Source:  News 24

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