Seven MPs On Wednesday 27,2019 threatened to sue vice-chancellors following proposals to increase university fees.
The legislators also warned Education CS Amina Mohamed and Higher Education Loans Board CEO Charges Ringera over remarks that the government will use police to track down loan defaulters.
The MPs are Babu Owino (Embakasi East), Charles Nguna (Mwingi West), John Paul (Igembe South), Mohamed Ali (Nyali), Antony Oluoch (Mathare), Brighton Yegon (Konoin) and Samuel Atandi (Alego Usonga).
They told a press conference in Parliament the plan to increase the fees will jeopardise careers and lock out thousands of students from accessing university education since most of university students come from poor backgrounds
“Tomorrow, we are going to file for an injunction to prevent university chancellors from increasing university fees,” Owino said. The said
The MPs’ reaction comes barely a week after vice chancellors petitioned the National Assembly’s Education Committee to triple the fees.
Through the vice chancellors’ committee, the VCs want the fees hiked to Sh48, 000 from Sh16,000 to ensure “quality services”.
“The cost of a training course back then was Sh86,000, but due to inflation, the cost has gone up threefold,” University of Embu VC Daniel Mugendi told the committee on Friday.
But the MPs warned the university heads against the move, saying it will lock out more than 70 per cent of students coming from poor families from achieving their dreams.
“Government has already increased taxes for parents. Further increment of fees will deny our students education,” Owino said.
Atandi called for a thorough audit of public universities, saying the VCs have run down the institutions and turned them into moneymaking institutions.
“Some institutions are involved in huge infrastructural projects, some are meant for siphoning public money because there’s no reason why a project should stall for more than 10 years,” Atandi said.
Ali termed the proposed fee increase as dangerous saying there is need for stakeholder engagement.
Babu Owino had previously encouraged university students to stage demos countrywide to oppose the fees increment motion.