The Minister of Development Planning, Mr. Selibe Mochoboroane says the loan bursary fund was amended in 1978 and it does not align with the 21st century.
He said this when officially opening the Loan Bursary Fund policy Validation Workshop held in Maseru.
He said the Department of National Manpower Development Secretariat (NMDS) had numerous setbacks to fund students since its establishment, saying the outdated law is the major problem as it does not align with the recent times.
He stressed that the ministry has considered to validated the loan bursary fund and the main objectives are; to improve award of bursaries to reach all needy Basotho students, access to quality tertiary education, to improve financing strategy for sustainability and adequate bursaries coverage of all the needy Basotho students, to strengthen governance and management of bursaries
He, therefore, expressed hope that the meeting will focus on building the strategic document with the common sense of building never ending source of bursaries for Basotho.
Giving the presentation on National Student Tertiary Policy, the NMDS Director, Ms. Flora Ntsane said Skills Development Programme is regarded as a key strategic instrument to provide the countries’ labour markets with the required technical knowledge for economic activities.
She noted that according to Economic Development Documents, the United Nations (UN) 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063, the focus on the ‘Africa We Want’ emphasises for countries to enable access to inclusive and equitable quality education.
She said Lesotho has through National Vision 2020 and implementing National Strategic Development Plans (NSDPs) I & II, committed and domesticated the above global and regional skills development agendas in order to achieve its human capital development goal.
‘’ It is then through the National Human Resources Development Policy (NHRDP), that Lesotho needs to develop required skills through inclusive and equitable education in order to obtain ample pool of economic capacity competency ‘’ she stressed.
Ms. Ntsane said this calls for improving and aligning the Loan Bursary Fund (LBF), as a vehicle for financial interventions for higher education.
She mentioned that the National Student Tertiary Fund (NSTF) Policy is intended to outline the standard methods, principles and deliverables that Lesotho Government is planning to utilize in responding to national human capital needs through offering financial support to those who are capable and willing to pursue post high school skills developing education.
The workshop included government officials, representatives from Misa, students from higher learning institutions.
By: Staff Reporter: ’Maphoka Likotsi