Kenya Parliament Wants KUCCPS to Place All Students in Public Universities

By | May 5, 2023

The National Assembly is pushing for a policy shift that would require all students who qualify for university education to be placed in public institutions of higher learning.

The Public Investment Committee on Governance and Education believe that this move would save the government more than Ksh. 20 billion, which could then be directed to public universities.

Committee members pressed Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu to confirm that the government would make sure all public students are placed in universities.

The committee believes that all students who qualified for university education should be placed in public institutions because public universities have the capacity to accommodate them.

The committee chair, Jack Wamboka, asked why the government was financing students in private universities while neglecting those in public universities. All committee members adopted this position.

“We know that our public universities have the capacity to take all the students that qualified for university, and therefore there is no rationale to continue using public money for paying for students in private universities,” said Wamboka.

In the last financial year, the government paid Ksh. 13.7 billion to public universities as capitation to students in private universities and Ksh. 6.7 billion as grants.

The government’s funding of students in private universities has been a matter of concern for the committee.

Education CS Machogu made a commitment to place all students in public universities, except where a parent has requested otherwise. He said that this was now the government’s policy.

“The government is going to place all students into public universities unless a parent has requested otherwise, that we have said and that is now our policy,” CS Machogu said.

The Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) is also committed to giving priority to public universities in the placement of qualified students.

The committee was pleased with this development and announced that it would communicate the commitment to the House. It also warned that any officer who did not adhere to the policy would face disciplinary action.

The committee announced that KUCCPS would not place any public student in a private university unless the student had requested it and was willing to pay.

“We have put the last nail in the coffin, that moving forward from this year’s intake, KUCCUPS is not going to place any public student in private university unless they have requested to do so and for which they should pay, we are going to make the recommendations to Parliament,” he said.

This commitment comes at a time when public universities have a pending bill of just over Ksh. 60 billion, with many projects stalling due to a lack of funds.