S. African student mistakenly gets over $1m uni loan, spends chunk of it in 5 months

A South African student mistakenly paid university loan of R14 million ($1,076,568) spent R500,000 ($38,352) in five months since she received the money.

The Walter Sisulu University in the Eastern Cape confirmed on Tuesday that the student had received the money from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme through her debit card.

The university spokesperson Yonela Tukwayo told local media that the student reported the mistake to the authorities late after she had already spent a chunk of the money.

“People started complaining after she started living a very lavish lifestyle … It was very callous and she did not report the matter immediately. She will definitely be held responsible,” she was quoted by local news portal Sunday Times.

“The student will be held liable to pay back the money she had spent‚” she added.

Financial aid is given to students through the debit card to buy books and food at some designated points.

The university said it will investigate to see how the student managed to buy expensive goods using the card.

They blamed the company in charge of paying the loans for the mistake. The company also distanced itself from the mistake and blamed it on the card issuing company which has since blocked her debit account.