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Braamfontein, home to bogus colleges!

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Thando Gugulethu

The education department is set to have more sting operations in Braamfontein, central Johannesburg and other parts of the country. This comes after a number of bogus colleges were reported in the area.

In the heart of Jo’burg lies an increasing trend of money making schemes; the growing number of colleges in Braamfontein remains a concern to department officials and society at large. It still remains unclear who are the masterminds behind these entities, but they are multiplying and targeting more and more young people. Owners of bogus colleges exploit students, leave them with fake qualifications and or disappear with their monies.

Hlompho Ntlamela, a victim of Brooklyn City College, in Braamfontein shared “I was introduced to the school by a friend; this was after I performed badly in my matric exams. I chose to rewrite some of the subjects and registered with the school. It was at a later stage when I learnt the school wasn’t registered and by then it was too late. A lot people find themselves drawn to these kinds of colleges because they are not expensive,” she explained.

A lot people find themselves drawn to these kinds of colleges because they are not expensive.

The number of unregistered colleges’ in the area doubles at the start of the academic year, as this is the time many young people are looking for institutions to further their studies. Ms Ntlamela advices students to ensure the institutions of their choice are registered with the department. As well as ensure the courses are accredited with the council on higher education.

According to Dr. Shaheeda Essack from the Department of Higher Education and Training (Dhet), Braamfontein is no longer the hotspot for bogus colleges. Dr.Essask says, “The department has been monitoring Braamfontein over the years and has since removed all of the unregistered colleges except for one- Johannesburg City College; the case is currently with the Hillbrow police station. “The South African police service( SAPS) have made a couple of arrests and the cases are being considered by the court of law, but we as the department continually observe and monitor the trends,” she said. The education department urges the public to stay vigilant at all times and to report cases of bogus colleges to their nearest SAPS.

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