WINDHOEK- The newly appointed president of the Namibian National Students Organisation (Nanso), Simon Metumo Taapopi said the organisation expects students to demand more from them to ensure that their rights, interests, aspirations and hopes are championed and realised.
Taapopi was reverting to queries sent to his office by Youth Corner on expectations student should anticipate from his tenure. “We expect them to participate in public discourse, hold us accountable and come up with policy proposals that we must champion,” he informed Youth Corner.
The new leader who took over from Ester Shekupe Simon said they do not want universities to remain exorbitantly expensive as that furthers the commodification of education. “That creates huge debt bubbles,” he explained.
“No student should have to pay for education because it is a public good, however, we do not live in an ideal world and we understand that in the neoliberal world we live in, nothing is ever free. We want the government to treat education as an investment in society,” Taapopi stated.
He mentioned there must be a functioning funding model which does not keep universities wholly dependent on fees. “This means that there must be a funding structure that ensures universities do not collapse or deteriorate in quality even if the majority of students attending them are poor and cannot afford to pay their fees, which is the case here in Namibia,” he stressed.
Nanso has proposed the introduction of higher education levy on cement, which will decrease the issue of funding and ensure that students are adequately funded and to systemically address the funding crisis they are in, however, Taapopi stressed that there is a lack of political will to implement their proposal. “Despite this, we shall maximise the capacity of the Nanso Executive Committee (NEC), we will ensure they are capacitated with the right skills set and have performance indicators to ensure that every student representative performs optimally in the interests of students,” assured Taapopi.
Taapopi said the first goal is to ensure the continuation of building the organisation by establishing more branches and ensuring the organization has regional offices. “We shall further be ensuring the accessibility of higher education as well as basic education,” he pointed out.
Taapopi stated that the vision of Nanso is to ensure that every Namibian child has got an opportunity to access the doors of learning and we shall ensure that the doors of learning are open to every Namibian child.
By Paheja Siririka
2019-12-18 10:50:05 | 3 months ago