Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha, on Monday, February 17, found himself on the receiving end when he suggested that wealthy companies needed to help the government in financing the education of learners from underprivileged backgrounds.
Speaking during the opening of a one-week Regional Forum on University Education Reforms in Nairobi, the tough-talking CS explained that the government was close to meeting its target of 100% transition from primary to secondary school but there were concerns over learners who were not able to raise school fees.
He, therefore, announced that the ministry intended to pursue highly-profitable companies in the country to compel them to contribute to ensuring needy students were not denied basic education.
"I also want to mention [players] in local industries. Now that we are finishing the 100% transition, I am going to [target] the companies that are making money. We are going to follow other companies that we feel must give back to society and sponsor children," revealed the CS during the event.
Magoha further ordered public universities not to set up additional satellite campuses, arguing that the mushrooming campuses were lowering the quality of education.
“The quality of PhDs is depreciating. Even the Master's degree is useless. It's about time, we stopped talking about numbers, let’s have only quality graduates,” he continued.
Magoha's stunning revelation was met with hostility from Kenyans online who wondered why the government would resort to compelling private companies that already had CSR activities in the Education sector to help the government meet its financing shortfall.
"CS Magoha can't beat innovation and tech advancement. He is still in stone age - let his CAS Kinuthia handle that angle," offered Ben.
"When the government fails, charity should not be forced through people's throats, where was the government when people were starting up," argued Robert.
"I know he doesn't know it but Magoha opening his mouth argues a greater case for educational reform than any advocacy would. He is theoretically the pinnacle of the educational pyramid in this country, but each time he speaks I feel like a book burns itself in protest," shared Mariga Thoiti.
"His suggestions seem communism to me. On another note why should I be forced to give my money to help fund what the government ought to do in the first place?" wondered Stan Kinyanjui.
There was barely any sentiment in support of Magoha's statements as Kenyans online continued to lash out at the former University of Nairobi VC for the assertion that the government's responsibility to provide basic education to all Kenyans could be shared with the corporate world.
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