Former Jomo Kenyatta University Students Organization-JKUSO Vice-chair Meimuna Said has urged the government to reopen Garissa University, which was indefinitely closed following April 2 terror attack.
Said, a fourth year at JKUAT, described the continued closure of the university is a discrimination against the people of the defunct North Eastern Province.
“Where will the locals study? Having higher learning institutions in NEP brings development in the area something which I feel some people feel threatened,” lamented Meimuna, a Junior Senator in Wajir County.
According to the former student leader, Garissa University offered education courses while most locals prefer business courses, leading to the small number of students from the region joining the institution.
“The campus offers education as a course where majority of the locals are studying business related courses that’s why we are in Nairobi and Mombasa,” she told Capital Campus.
For students not willing to go back to the institution even if it is reopened, Meimuna a fourth year pursuing Development Studies urges the government to support them wherever they choose to study.
“Those who have made up their mind not to come back should be allowed to choose whichever institution they want to go to, and the government should facilitate their fees and must undergo counseling,” she said.
Even as the founder of Jomo Kenyatta University Female Students Association and an advocate of community development took her stance, a heated debate among Kenyans on Twitter, #KOT was going on, for the better part of Friday, with #AvoidGarissaUniversity trending.
They gave varied sentiments, with some proposing the conversion of the college into a military training facility.
“If Garissa is to be reopened, then it should be for a different reason, not academic,” read one of tweets.
“GU could be converted into a top notch military academy specializing in desert warfare, guerrilla tactics and intel,” another #KOT tweeted.
Garissa University, a constituent college of Moi University was closed following a terror attack that left at least 147 Kenyans dead, majority being students.
Survivors were later to be reabsorbed by Moi University Eldoret and since then, the college, which hit international headlines, has remained closed.