Kenya: CS Magoha Warns Varsities Against Introduction of 'Irrelevant' Programs

Nairobi — Education Cabinet Secretary Professor George Magoha has sent a stern warning to university vice chancellors against introducing new programs which are irrelevant to the economy.

Speaking while launching the Universities and Colleges Placement Results at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Magoha said funding for universities will strictly be based on performance.

"We have allowed our intellectual capabilities to go to sleep because of other people and we cannot blame those people because they do not know what a university is, we are the ones who know. Why are universities introducing some very funny and irrelevant courses which only attract 2 to 5 students? We cannot continue like this and I want to put it clear that when you come to me asking for funding, I will first ask you to show me what you have done," said Magoha.

He further cautioned against establishment of universities which are not education oriented saying university institutions are not local employment agencies.

"Let us all be honest with each other. Are all those institutions claiming to be universities really universities? You find more than 10 universities in one locality. A university is not a local employment agency to employ your tribesmen. It is not a political tool for politicians to endear themselves to locals. So, for us to solve the problems we are experiencing in our universities, we need to accept that the problem is there and politicians will not solve them for us," he said.

Meanwhile, the 2018 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination Candidates will be able to know their university placement from May 1, 2019.

The Kenya Universities and College Central Placement Service CEO John Muraguri said this after the launch of new placement career guide book and release of 2019/2020 placement results by CS Magoha.

"We will open the portal so that the students may be able to know their placement. They will access all the information including their programs in an exercise which will commence on May 1 and close on 31st the same month," Muraguri said.

According to Muraguri some 2,928 candidates who qualified for degree programs did not apply for placement at all and another 4,162 applied but did not merit the choices they made.

He further said the students will be given a chance to review their placement once the portal is open.

"Once the students access the portal, they will be given a chance to evaluate their programs and if one is not satisfied, they will be able to change and indicate the university and the program they would want to enrol for. However, if their merit does not match up to the standards of the university one wants to change to, they will have to accept their current placement," said Muraguri.

The Kenya Universities and College Central Placement Service for the candidates was launched in 6 February by former Education CS Amina Mohamed.

During the launch, Mohamed stated that 90,744 candidates qualified for degree programs and were to be admitted to universities under government sponsorship.

According to her, some 651,189 candidates qualified for placement to various universities, colleges and training institutions.

"Based on the 2018 KCSE results, 651,189 candidates qualified for placement to tertiary institutions at various levels under government sponsorship. Of these, 90,744 attained a mean grade of C+ and above, meaning that they all qualified to join local universities. I wish to announce that all the candidates who scored C+ and above in the 2018 KCSE examination will be selected for admission to degree courses in both public and private universities," she said.

At the same time, Mohamed said that some 121,288 candidates who scored C Plain and C minus were also eligible for diploma courses while those who got grade D and D Plus can apply for certificate courses.

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