The Ndia Technical and Vocational Training Institute constructed at a cost of Sh 50 million risks being closed down due to poor enrollment.
The Institute, equipped with the state of the art facilities worth millions of shillings, has only 50 students and 11 staffers who are underutilized.
College Principal Benjamin Muchiri asked the parents from the larger Kirinyaga West Sub-county to enroll their children with the institution now that the tuition fee has been subsidized by the government.
The college which was opened by the Deputy President William Ruto in December last year has various faculties where the students can enroll for their desired craft courses, according to Muchiri.
“When I compare other such institutions which opened doors to the students same time with ours, their enrollment is ranging between 300- 500 students when we have only 50,” he said.
The college Head wondered why parents whose children did not make it to the various Universities last year were not enrolling them at the institute yet the county has a huge deficit for tradesmen and other specialized courses.
Speaking at Kiangwaci market during the inauguration of Stephen Kiranga as the Assistant Chief for Gacharu Sub- Location where the institute is situated, Muchiri urged parents not to keep their children at home when the facility was almost empty.
“The government has even provisions for bursaries as well as the HELB loans available for any student and as such do not see why parents were not encouraging their chidden to take this advantage,” Muchiri said.
Area Sub-County Commissioner Moses Ivuto blamed the high consumption rate of illicit liquor by the residents thereby developing a don’t care attitude against their own children.
He directed the newly inaugurated Assistant Chief to embark on a massive crackdown on the menace and at the same time sensitizing the residents on the need to enroll their children at the College.
“Very soon, the government is going to roll out the construction of the affordable Houses where 3000 such units will be put up in the county and since the project will require masons, plumbers and other cadre with the construction skills, perhaps the resultant jobs created will have to be taken over by outsiders unless the enrollment apathy was done away with,” he said.
The institute was built and completed during the tenure of Stephen Ngari as the MP for Ndia but remained nonoperational for two years.
Only this Institute is operational in the entire county while Gichugu and Kirinyaga Central sub-counties are yet to build the facilities
The one in Mwea was completed almost two years ago but has remained dormant
There has been demand for technical institutes in the area after Kirinyaga Technical Institute was elevated to a University several years now.
By Irungu Mwangi