NMDS extends time for bursary applications

MASERU — The National Manpower Development Secretariat (NMDS) has extended the deadline for submissions of scholarship applications for local students who wish to study in South Africa.

The NMDS information officer, Moeketsi Rankhone, told a press conference yesterday that the deadline had been extended to September 14.

Rankhone said the decision to extend the deadline was reached after they received fewer applications than usual.

“There was lower-than-usual submissions of applications this year,” he said.

“We are worried and not sure if the invitations for applications we sent were well received. That’s why we decided to extend the deadline.”

Rankhone said scholarships would be given to at least 386 new applicants.

“We normally receive around 1 500 applications every year and only those who have performed best in their last certificates get the priority to be enrolled in the sponsorship programme,” he said.

NMDS has currently enrolled about 1 500 students at tertiary institutions in South Africa.

“More than M100 million has been budgeted for this,” Rankhone said.

He said the NMDS was losing money to students who do not repay their loans when they complete their studies.

This was making it increasingly difficult for the NMDS to extend loans to students.

Finance Minister Timothy Thahane earlier this year threatened to take legal action against students who fail to pay back their loans.

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