Zuma's rumoured free education plan could be ploy for 2019, says Ralph Mathekga

President Jacob Zuma's rumoured free education plan could be part of a strategy to retain support from the student constituency come 2019, says political analyst Ralph Mathekga.

Reports have surfaced over the weekend claiming that Zuma is planning to announce government's plan to provide free education at tertiary institutions.

The Presidency has since issued a statement denying reports of an impending announcement.

Read: Free education for TVETs and university loans provided says Presidency

Meanwhile, National Treasury's head of budget Michael Sachs has resigned from his position over alleged interference by Zuma.

Mathekga says the rumors of free education are in line with Zuma's rhetoric on radical economic transformation, which has gained traction in certain quarters of South Africa.

Also read: Free education should've been implemented a long time ago - Holomisa

Don't underestimate the weight of the 2019 election and how that might come as a factor into this.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

The ANC will become more and more populist when it is going into the 2019 elections. The populist rhetoric has set in within the ANC.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

They know that if they go into 2019 with this idea, it gives them a good chance to retain some of their support.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

At the same time, the Presidency released the Heher Commission report on the feasibility of free higher education early on Monday.

Mathekga says Zuma is not legally obliged to implement the recommendations of the report.

Read the Fees Commission Report here.

Take a listen to this analysis:


CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
How Zimbabwe's impeachment of Mugabe will work

How Zimbabwe's impeachment of Mugabe will work

ISS Senior Researcher Derek Matyszak breaks down the numbers and how the impeachment process will play out.

Mahlobo won't be drawn on nuclear, until Cabinet approves energy plan

Mahlobo won't be drawn on nuclear, until Cabinet approves energy plan

Energy Minister David Mahlobo says government has not started the nuclear procurement process, reports EWN's Gaye Davis.

WC govt launches campaign to help tourists, Cape guesthouses save water

WC govt launches campaign to help tourists, Cape guesthouses save water

Economic opportunities MEC Alan Winde says that the focus is on helping smaller tourism establishments save water.

Tough decisions ahead for Idols SA winner Paxton Fielies, says publicist

Tough decisions ahead for Idols SA winner Paxton Fielies, says publicist

Publicist and artist manager Martin Myers talks about what's ahead for Idols South Africa season 13 winner Paxton Fielies.

Free education for TVETs and university loans provided says Presidency

Free education for TVETs and university loans provided says Presidency

Spokesperson for the Presidency Bongani Ngqulunga outlines some of the recommendations made in the Fees Commission Report.

Free education should've been implemented a long time ago - Holomisa

Free education should've been implemented a long time ago - Holomisa

UDM Leader, Bantu Holomisa responded to reports that the President is interfering in the operations of National Treasury.

Popular articles
Financially prepare yourself before the wedding bells

Financially prepare yourself before the wedding bells

Liberty Legal Marketing Specialist, Faeeza Khan talk us through a few financial pointers before getting hitched.

Oscar's family unhappy with producers as movie makes SA debut this weekend

Oscar's family unhappy with producers as movie makes SA debut this weekend

The movie stars Joburg-born actor Andreas Damm as Pistorius and Victoria Secret model Toni Garrn as Reeva Steenkamp.

Statement to remove LLB programme from SA universities is misleading: Max Price

Statement to remove LLB programme from SA universities is misleading: Max Price

Max Price says Council on Higher Education's announcement that UKZN, UCT and UL could lose their LLB accreditation is not right.

Is taking items from the hotel room stealing?

Is taking items from the hotel room stealing?

Tsogo Sun Cape regional manager explains which items are free to be taken home by guests and why.

WATCH: Innovative spray limits toilet flushes and saves water

WATCH: Innovative spray limits toilet flushes and saves water

Loo Me is a simple yet effective scented foam that takes the yuck out of "mellowing" toilets preventing multiple flushes.