With the academic year set to resume in a few weeks, Prime Minister James Marape has again clarified misconceptions surrounding the student loan program.
The Prime Minister today met with representatives from Higher Learning Institutions around the country, accompanied by Minister for finance, Reinbo Paita, Minister for Higher Education Nick Kuman and Deputy Prime Minister Davis Steven in Port Moresby.
Representatives from universities, colleges, technical institutions and other higher learning institutions in the country met today at the University of Papua New Guinea for the Prime Minister’s address regarding the student loan program.
Prime Minister who spoke to the media recently, reiterated that applying for a student loan is not compulsory for every student however, it is an interest free loan available for students who wish to apply upon registration.
“HELP is not compulsory for everyone, if your parents can pay your school fees, then fine, you are not compelled or forced to source money from HELP ” Marape said
Marape clarified that TESAS will still be available to students as an incentive for students to perform well.
“There have been misconceptions, but HECAS and AES will remain for students who perform well academically” he said.
The Prime Minister added that K238 million has been set aside to be released institutions for the student loans, K60 million to K70 million will be released quarterly for payments.
He further stated that DHESRT will make available a Bio data form to higher learning institutions for students who opt for HELP during registration so an exact number of students applying for a loan can be sent to DHESRT and the 1st quarter funds will be released early this year.
Pamela Barara, EMTV News Cadet, Port Moresby