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Minister Nzimande and NSFAS Chairperson Accused of Corruption in Leaked Recordings



Minister Nzimande and NSFAS Chairperson Accused of Corruption in Leaked Recordings

Minister Nzimande and NSFAS Chairperson Accused of Corruption in Leaked Recordings . The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) has brought to light disturbing revelations through leaked recordings that implicate the Higher Education Minister, Blade Nzimande, and the Chairperson of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), Ernest Khosa, in corrupt practices within the department and financial aid scheme.

Call for Resignation and Presidential Intervention

OUTA is calling for the immediate resignation of Minister Nzimande and Chairperson Khosa. Failing voluntary resignation, the organization urges President Cyril Ramaphosa to take decisive action by removing them from their positions.

Contents of Leaked Recordings

The leaked voice recordings contain serious allegations that point to a patronage network within the Department of Higher Education, involving the minister, NSFAS chair, and several others. The recordings disclose the following details:

Financial Transactions and Patronage

  • Service providers allegedly paid substantial amounts to Minister Nzimande and Chairperson Khosa, with the South African Communist Party (SACP) receiving R1 million. In exchange, these providers received tenders and protection.

Questionable Conduct Prior to CEO’s Special Leave

  • A meeting between Khosa and Thula Ntumba, husband of Coinvest director Tshegofatso Ntumba, occurred a day before the announcement of former NSFAS CEO Andile Nongogo’s special leave.
  • Khosa had the opportunity to omit information that could incriminate Nongogo and was aware of Nongogo’s past wrongdoings.
  • Khosa expressed assurance that they would not face consequences.
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Manipulation of Legal Processes

  • Khosa sought to appoint a legal firm, Werksmans Attorneys, under his control to handle the NSFAS direct payment system irregularities.
  • Khosa altered the contents of a letter signed by Nongogo.

Suspicion of Investigation

  • Minister Nzimande was allegedly aware of their connections with Fintechs and suspected that investigators were monitoring their cell phones.

Dealing with Service Provider Contracts

  • Recommendations to terminate contracts of service providers were discussed in the recordings, yet NSFAS has not disclosed alternative plans for the 2023 allowances of thousands of students.

OUTA Response and Actions

Rudie Heyneke, OUTA’s Investigations Manager, emphasized the need for a comprehensive investigation into the widespread corruption within the higher education sector, as revealed by OUTA’s reports and the leaked recordings. OUTA plans to submit the recordings and its findings to relevant authorities, including the Special Investigating Unit (SIU), Public Protector, SARS, and the Auditor-General’s office.


The recordings underscore the urgency of addressing corruption within the higher education sector. OUTA’s call for the removal of Minister Nzimande and Chairperson Khosa signals the gravity of the situation, emphasizing the need for swift and thorough investigations to restore integrity and transparency in the Department of Higher Education and NSFAS.

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