Â BY Patrick Muthuri
The government is putting up more efforts in upgrading 11 University colleges to fully fledged Universities. This is in regard to expansion of public universities to create room for more students qualified but are currently left out.
The minister for Higher Education, Science and Technology Professor Margaret Kamar said that there is urgent need for the expansion of private and public universities following the impact of free primary Education that will be felt in 2015.
Â Speaking at Kaaga in Imenti north of Meru County the Minister, added that the Ministry has put in place several policy interventions to address the increasing demand for higher education.
âAs a ministry we have put in place massive expansion plans for public universities. Most of the universities have expanded but they are not yet enough. Last year, Joint Admissions Board JAB was able to admit only 41, 000 students which only 12% of those qualified for university admission,â she said.
Â She however applauded the private universities for supplementing governmentâs effort to provide higher education noting that the government has effected tax exemption for learning and construction materials for private universities to ensure growth in the sector.
Â âI urge private investors to put up more universities to enable more students have access higher education. The government will remain committed to such public-private partnerships. We need more universities so as to produce enough human resource to implement the vision 2030,â the Minister remarked.
She also noted that the universities Bill, Science and Innovations Bill and TIVET Bill which are ready for debate in parliament will help address most of the challenges facing higher education in the country.
âWe have already introduced accelerated intake of students to address the influx. This will help in clearing the backlog created by long transition periods. The universities bill recommends that public and private universities be put under one Act and be run under individual charter,â Prof Kamar said.