By Imaan Moosa

27 BSc students in Construction Management and Quantity Surveying are unable to graduate in March due to unpaid fees.
Twenty-seven Wits University students say they will be unable to graduate in the upcoming March graduation ceremonies due to non-payment of fees by their bursary sponsor.

The Bachelor of Science (BSc) honours students in Construction Management and Quantity Surveying were recipients of funding from the Thapelo Madibeng Bursary Scheme administered by the Construction Education and Training Authority (CETA).

The students have missed the Examinations and Graduation Office (EGO) deadline of March 15 to settle outstanding fees or sign an Acknowledgement of Debt (AOD) to secure their places in March graduations.

“The CETA funding was supposed to fast-track the application process because they knew we had to graduate in March 2019,” said Zigqibo Mpokeli, a Construction Management honours student.

“The biggest problem is professional registration. We need our degree certificates to register as a candidate with the South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions (SACPCMP),” said Balulekile Sanqela, another Construction Management honours student.

Lebogang Ngwatle from the Development and Fundraising Office says they have been “working tirelessly” with the CETA to ensure that the funder honours their contractual obligations.

“The University sympathises with the students who are eligible to graduate in March 2019 and who will now graduate in June 2019 as a result of the delay,” Ngwatle said.

She added that the affected students will be supplied with letters to secure employment while they wait for their degree certificates.

“This can be submitted to prospective employers to ensure that the students will not be prejudiced in their professional endeavours,” Ngwatle said.

Numerous attempts to get comment from the CETA were unsuccessful. The 27 students received funding up a maximum of R80 000 to cover the costs of tuition, textbooks, stationery, meals and accommodation.

FEATURED IMAGE: BSc students leave Chamber of Mines building, West Campus. By Imaan Moosa