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Govt urged to support private universities

08 May 2013, 16:37 Mwangi Karanja

The government has been urged to support private universities for the country to realize vision 2030.

Speaking over the weekend in Kitale, the Mount Kenya University board of trustees chairman Simon Gicharu observed that many private universities struggles to expand due to lack of infrastructure like roads.

He said that many Kenyans in remote areas are in need of higher education but lack of infrastructure makes it hard to establish campuses.

“The new government should work towards making it easier for private institutions to develop since we are currently forced to construct roads before setting up a campus,” he said.

Gicharu further said that financial support was vital for the future of any private university saying that the government was doing little in financing them.

“We are forced to take loans from banks which make many universities to strain during repayment. The government should seek ways of helping us provide education to Kenyans,” Gicharu added.

He revealed that the Mt. Kenya university is building a Six Star hotel in Kitale at a cost of KES 300 million in support of tourism in Trans Nzoia County which he said has vast tourist attractions like the Mt. Elgon National park.

Mount Kenya University chairman refuted claims by local leaders that the university was only offering social science programmes.

He said that the Endebes agriculture research center owned by the university would offer science and engineering courses which would increase skilled manpower in the county.

“Trans Nzoia County is the cereal basket of the nation. We want to train people who will come up with new variety of seeds and also be able to manage industrial units in the county,” he posed.

Earlier in the week, local leaders had complained over what they termed as 'useless courses' being offered by universities in the County.

They said that the county had many industries and lacked engineers and researchers accusing the institutions of doing little to address the issue.

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