, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 18 – Deputy President William Ruto says the Government will not entertain the mushrooming of universities founded on ethnic backgrounds, terming it unacceptable.
Ruto said establishment of universities on tribal backgrounds must be discouraged at all costs if quality education has to be maintained in the country.
“Our institutions should be centres of excellence. We should discourage the culture of establishing universities on tribal grounds if we are to maintain quality education in this great nation,” said Ruto.
Speaking during the 15th graduation ceremony at the Kenya Methodist University, Meru, the Deputy President told the management of universities to be responsible and ensure their institutions reflected the image of the country.
“We should not turn universities into ethnic or village meetings. We should run away from the culture of establishing universities on ethnicity,” he said.
“We should ensure our institutions of higher learning stand as towers of excellence and stand up to what is truly Kenya,”
The Deputy President asked the Commission for University Education to ensure all universities lived up to the ideals of quality education and get rid of those founded on tribal backgrounds.
“The Commission for university education has been asked to ensure universities live to the ideals of quality, affordable and accessible education for all Kenyans and weed the ones established on tribal backgrounds,” said Ruto.
Ruto said the Government recognizes the role played by churches in the development of education among other sectors in the country.
“We recognize the history and contribution of churches in education through established and management of many schools in the country,” said Ruto.
He said churches were playing a key role in expanding opportunities of growth through quality education.
The Deputy President told universities to rededicate their resources towards research.
He said development of education could not be achieved through magicians or casework but through research.
He said education should be geared towards solving the challenges facing the country.
“It is only through research that development of education based on proven knowledge can be realized,” said Ruto.
In a move to ensuring all Kenyans access to education, Ruto said the Government has set aside Sh7.5billion for bursaries and loans for students in universities and middle level colleges.
He however, urged Kenyans who benefitted from loans to ensure they paid back to enable students from poor backgrounds access such funds.
The Deputy President urged universities to offer courses, which were in line with the needs of the country.
“Knowledge has not been threatened like today. What we know today might become obsolete in 2020 or 2030. Knowledge is undergoing revolution and we must change and embrace the changes to suit the technological needs of the current world,” said Ruto.
He said universities should focus their students towards creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship so as to get content creators to deal with emerging technologists in the field of Internet, Facebook and twitter among others.
Ruto said it was only through investments in education that the challenges facing the country could be solved.
The Deputy President challenged the graduands to positively participate in nation building by putting into practice the knowledge they acquired from institutions of higher learning.
Ruto said the youth were instrumental in shaping destiny of the societies.
He told them to carry themselves professionally so as to be respected in the society and be ready to contribute fully to national development.
Education Cabinet Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi warned school managers against misuse of public resources.
“School managers must ensure prudent use of resources,” said Mr., Kaimenyi.
He urged the graduands to ensure a continuous learning process to acquire knowledge and skills needed for their personal development and that of the country.
Others who attended the occasion included Senator Kiraitu Murungi (Meru), Dawood Rahim (Imenti North), Florence Kajuju (Women MP, Meru), deputy governor Raphael Muriungi (Meru) and KEMU Vice Chancellor Prof. Kirimi Kiriamiti among others.