Several students who had turned up for their first year at Kigali Institute of Education were in shock to learn that their names did not appear on the list of those to be sponsored by the Student Financing Agency for Rwanda (SFAR) and instead told to return to their homes.
After spending a week at the institute’s premises, hundreds of first year students are seeking explanations from SFAR and the Ministry of Education.
Visibly angry students said that their names appeared in local newspapers as government sponsored students but were only surprised to see the turnaround at the institution.
“My name was in Imvaho Nshya. I was selected to go to Ingando and spent so much on my travel to process verification forms,” a student only identified as Angel said.
“They (SFAR) tell us that they don’t have money for us. It’s now that they are telling us that we have low marks,” the student said.
The director of loans and bursaries disbursement in SFAR, Aviti Bagabo explained that the lists released by the Rwanda National Examination Council (RNEC) showed students who had qualified for admission into the universities considering the points they had scored.
“The students are mistaken, the list that was released in Imvaho Nshya was by RNEC not SFAR. It doesn’t mean if you filled the form you are going to be sponsored. It is up to us to determine who gets the loan and who doesn’t,” he explained.
However, Bagabo took the blame for the delay in producing lists that categorize the students.
“To some extent they have a point, but not all institutions start on the same day. The form collection and verification is very hectic and ends when they are about to start,” he said.