Govt Withdraws Ksh5B Fund for University Students 

  • Graduates attend a graduation ceremony organised by a Kenyan University.
    Graduates attend a graduation ceremony organised by a Kenyan University.
  • Government-sponsored students who extend their courses are set for tough times after the government withdrew a Ksh5 billion fund that offers school fee subsidies. 

    The Treasury and the Ministry of Education made the changes after what they termed as unnecessary extensions and delayed completion of studies.  

    The funding that was meant for 32,000 university students across the country will be delayed until an audit is conducted to verify how the affected students managed to prolong their stay in school.  

    A report submitted during a two-day consultative meeting between the National Assembly Education Committee, National Treasury, Ministry of Education and vice-chancellors in Mombasa indicated that some students differed without justifiable reasons or might have found a way to manipulate their school’s internal systems for personal gain.  

    File image of Kenyatta University
    File image of Kenyatta University
    Media House Credit

    The government has rejected a proposal by public universities’ management to have the students funded to complete their courses until the numbers are verified and individual cases justified. 

    The effort by the universities to requesting the funding to allow the students to complete their studies was turned down until such a time the ongoing audit is completed. 

    The Universities Fund (UF) Chief Executive Geoffrey Monari said that without a proper data system the government would be working blindly.

    “The data we are relying on have been generated manually and they could be inaccurate, and if public funds will be spent then we must be accurate on the numbers we are using to spend public resources,” the Fund Chief Executive Geoffrey Monari said. 

    Monari added that the data from the 27 universities would have to be scrutinized and cleaned first and that is the mandate of UF which cannot be compromised.  

    However, the Vice-Chancellors refuted such claims by the government saying that there is no policy on funding for repeating students at the university. The VCs requested an extension to sort out the matter in a way that will not affect the students.  

    Kenyatta University has 10,529 students who have deferred their studies who will require KSh1.8 billion. It is followed closely by the University of Nairobi which has 5,607 students who will require Ksh958 million to fund. Moi and Egerton universities will require total funding of Ksh1.4 billion. 

    In 2019, the government introduced a NEMIS system to help in tracking learners and weed out ghost learners to minimize unnecessary overspending.  

    A file image of Treasury CS Ukur Yatani
    A file image of Treasury CS Ukur Yatani
    Citizen Digital