The University of the Witwatersrand had to institute some wide-ranging cuts in its operational budget to make provision for insourcing, while also staving off a deficit, vice-chancellor Adam Habib told Business Day this week. The university cut its budgets for professional and administration units 8% and for faculties 6%, he said. Habib has previously warned that the university would be in the red if the more than R400m in outstanding student debt is not paid. The university hired more than 1,500 workers at the beginning of 2017. This was one of the demands of the student-led #FeesMustFall movement. One of the immediate benefits to insourced workers was salary increments, because they had previously been earning below-average wages. The financial implications of this would be evident in the 2017 financial results, Habib said. Habib confirmed that the university managed to steer clear of what would have been its first deficit in 11 years, largely by making budget cuts. This has had u...

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