‘Govt will continue funding public universities’ -Education CS
Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu has clarified that the government will continue funding public universities.
He noted that towards this end, the government has allocated a capitation of Ksh50 billion for university education and another Ksh15.8billion for the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB).
'I want to assure the public that the government will continue to support university education through regular exchequer support as well as building their support to raise more revenue through other revenue streams," he said.
The CS said that his statement regarding the matter over the weekend was taken out of context noting that he meant that respective universities should explore ways of generating their own revenue to supplement the funds they receive from the government.
He was speaking at the Kiambu Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) during the groundbreaking for the Project Promotion of Youth Employment and Vocationally Training which is sponsored by the German government.
"The government will continue supporting public universities and colleges. I was misquoted by the media. Relax and get assured that the government will continue funding them," he noted.
However, he said that universities should approach and explore other avenues of raising their own money such as research and innovation.
"Respective universities should major in research and innovation besides other areas in order to generate more fund to bridge the gap," he added.
The CS had late last week caused a storm when he said that will no longer fund public universities and colleges and instead called on them to explore other ways of generating revenue.
He was quoted as saying that the move would be necessitated by the fact that the exchequer is no longer able to fund the same owing to the fact that education currently consumes 25.9pc of the national budget.
The statement elicited sharp reactions with parents, students and the general populace terming the same as the beginning of the end of access to education by learners from humble backgrounds.
On Monday, the Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU) condemned the move and prevailed upon the CS to clarify his weekend statement.
UASU National Secretary Constantine Wesonga said that the remarks had caused the union and education stakeholders sleepless nights.
He asked Machogu to clarify whether his remarks were a government policy or a mere roadside declaration.
During the groundbreaking ceremony, the CS said that KIST will be transformed into a national polytechnic.
The CS was flanked by German Ambassador to Kenya Sebastian Groth, TVET Principal Secretary Margret Mwakima who said that the Sanitary making plant project will create job opportunities.
A total of Ksh 4.1billion will be used to construct the facility.