NEWS
16/12/2017 16:05 SAST | Updated 16/12/2017 16:05 SAST

EFF: Where Will Zuma Get The Money To Fund Free Education?

"There has to be a concrete plan on how infrastructure within higher education and training sectors is going to happen."

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The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has welcomed President Jacob Zuma's announcement on Saturday that free education will be extended to all poor students, but the party was wary of how it would be funded.

In a statement, the EFF acknowledged the efforts made by Zuma for free education, stating that "it will aid a lot of families and relieve a lot of financial burden from their shoulders".

But the party had some reservations.

"There has to be a concrete plan on how infrastructure within higher education and training sectors is going to happen. Implementing free education means there will also be huge numbers that want to access higher learning institutions," said EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi.

FeesMustfall

"Zuma has not indicated where all the money will come from to fund education. We believe that there has to be war against tax avoidance, particularly in the extractive industries, to combat illicit financial flows and tax base erosion."

Read: Father Christmas' Free Fees Announcement -- #WTF?

Zuma said in a statement on Saturday that the definition of poor and working-class students will now refer to "currently enrolled TVET Colleges or university students from South African households with a combined annual income of up to R350,000" by the 2018 academic year".

"As a result, the government must expand actual infrastructure and staff to cater for the growing numbers. Education must be decommodified to allow it to be about academic credentials and talent, as opposed to financial credentials."

Zuma's announcement comes on the day the ANC's watershed 54th elective conference is expected to begin. A new leader of the party will be elected at the conference.