HIGHER Education Students’ Loans Board (HESLB) has made improvements to the online loan application system through the Student’s Individual Permanent Account (SIPA), after launching 2023/2024 loan application guideline on Thursday.
The SIPA account that will be opened by student for loan application will provide information about the progress of the application and applicants will keep their passwords for them to log into the account and get information about their applications.
Speaking during the launch of guideline for academic year 2023-2024 in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Deputy Minister for Education, Science and Technology Omary Kipanga said that effective this year, loan applicants will not send hard copies to HESLB.
Mr Kipanga, who was representing the docket minister, Prof Adolf Mkenda said that in the past three years, HESLB has improved its systems and integrated them with Registration Insolvency and Trusteeship Agency (RITA), Tanzania Social Action Fund (TASAF), National Examinations Council of Tanzania (NECTA) and Tanzania Commission for Universities (TCU), to simplify loan application services.
Moreover, Mr Kipanga said, through Higher Education for Economic Transformation project (HEET), which is also implemented by HESLB, the payment system has been improved and now all students will receive their money within five minutes through Digital Disbursement Solution (DiDiS).
“The guideline directs applicants to have a Bank Account of their choice to facilitate payments while in college. This aims to facilitate the receipt of money quickly when student arrives at the college,” he added.
Regarding loans applicants for diploma level, he said that the Procedure is being prepared and the guideline will be issued soon
On the other hand, Mr Kipanga noted that from 2021-2022 to 2023-2024, the government has increased the budget for education loans from 570bn/- to 731bn/- in new academic year that will start October, 2023.
“This increase in funds has enabled the number of loan beneficiaries to increase from 177,615 in 2021-2022 to 205,000 beneficiaries who are expected to get education loans this new academic year of 2023-2024,” Mr Kipanga noted.
He urged loan applicants to read the loan application guideline carefully so that they cannot make mistakes in the application procedures.
“I would like to encourage parents and students to read the guideline carefully because we would not like to see a student missing a loan because he made a mistake in application procedures” he insisted
For his part, the Chairman of HESLB Board of Directors, Prof Hamisi Dihenga said that after the launch of the guideline, HESLB will start conducting public education programs through radio, television, social networks and direct meetings.
He said that HESLB has already established official communication with National Service (JKT) headquarters and applicants will have the opportunity to get the right application education through Popular Version
“Students continuing with JKT training should not be afraid, enough time has been given … and HESLB has already contacted the JKT headquarters so that they will be educated and apply for the loan after finishing the training,” Prof Dihenga said
The Executive Director of HESLB Mr Abdul-Razag Badru said online application window will be open for 90 days from July 15 – October 15, 2023, while guideline was available from yesterday for students, parents and guardians to spend two days reading it before application
“Starting today, we will be uploading various information about loan applications in social networks so that applicants can monitor from anywhere, even at home by using a smartphone,” Mr Badru said.