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Education Committee asks government to release funds for stalled projects in universities

The National Assembly Departmental Committee on Education wants the government to fast-track releasing of funds meant for ongoing projects in public universities.

The Members of Parliament led by Julius Melly, MP for Tinderet, who had toured Murang’a University of Technology (MUT) where they inspected the implementation of projects funded under the 2023/2024 financial year budget said they have seen a number of stalled projects in public universities due to lack of funds.

Melly noted with concern that there were several stalled projects across various universities and asked the government to prioritize clearing the pending bills so that the projects could be completed.

“We noted a number of stalled projects in public universities like Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) and Kenyatta University and all these projects if completed will enable the students have a better learning environment,” he said.

The committee was gathering feedback and working on corrective interventions in the instances where there has been challenges in budget implementation.

The chairman said that the team applauded MUT, noting that most of the projects were complete even though in some areas the government has not yet released funds.

“The university management at Murang’a University has made efforts to ensure that from other sources of funds, the university continues to complete the projects,” Melly said.

“The university has a big student population and today we have witnessed the ongoing construction of new auditoriums and lecture theatres,” he added.

The committee also engaged the university management on the effectiveness of the new funding model, its challenges and how it affects the face of student funding in public universities.

The chairperson noted that the committee also checked whether the university’s programmes were accredited and if they followed the Commission of University Education (CUE) Act.

“Most of the programmes here are accredited according to the law. However, we have noticed the issue of double accreditation by professional bodies that are not supported by the act of parliament,” he noted.

Melly said the committee wants to ensure that all university programmes were brought together and one regulator under CUE would be accrediting all the programmes across the universities so that the institutions do not have issues of double accreditation for programmes.

MUT Vice Chancellor Prof. Dickson Nyariki, on his part, said the university is working to ensure that those projects that could have stalled due to inadequate funding by the government were internally funded as they waited for money from the government.

The VC noted that the committee had also engaged the university management on the state of projects being undertaken as well as state of pending bills and other administrative and financial challenges faced by the institution.

Nyariki said the university has slightly over Sh200 million pending bills and requested the government to find a way to release those funds promptly.

By Purity Mugo


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