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    Public Universities Seek Ksh.20 Billion As Financial Crisis Deepens

    Public universities in the country have asked the government through the National Treasury to ease their cash flow.

    Already universities are facing financial problems with some of them insisting on cutting on the cost of operation by cutting on staff salaries and dismissing non-essential staff.

    Public universities have been facing financial difficulties in recent years due to a drop in the number of self-sponsored students in the wake of radical reforms in the education sector that saw the number of students attaining a C+ in KCSE drop.

    In the current fiscal year, the National Treasury allocated the university education vote Ksh.113 billion, which was a drop from Ksh. 123.6 billion universities received in the previous years. The drop has been blamed on the effects of COVID-19 on the economy.

    In the last three years, the number of students enrolling for self-sponsored courses has dropped significantly, hitting universities hard, as they generated billions from this program.

    According to Treasury Principal Secretary Julius Muia, while speaking in parliament, he said that a number of public universities had requested additional funding, showing the financial burden that public universities are having.

    “Several universities have already written to us and requested for additional funding amounting to Sh20 billion,” he said while addressing the National Assembly Committee on Education.

    University of Nairobi, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, Kisii University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology, Egerton University and Kabianga University have made requests,” he added. 

    Universities have been forced to freeze on new hiring as they struggle to pay salaries and huge debts. COVID-19 that forced educational institution close, made matters worse.

    This development comes even as parliament gave the green light to increase of university tuition fee from Ksh.16000.00 to Ksh.49000.00, the first such increment in almost 30 years. A move that has sparked riots from university students across the country.

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