The opposition now wants President William Ruto’s Kwanza government in Kenya to stay away from public universities.
Opiyo Wandayi, the minority leader, claimed in a statement on Friday that there was a plan by some government officials to seize the vast property and facilities that the institutions control.
“Our public universities sit on massive resources particularly land and infrastructure. Someone may be eyeing these resources under the guise of fixing the financial problems facing this institution,” he said.
The remarks were aimed at Investments, Trade and Industry CS Moses Kuria, who claimed some of the nation’s public universities ought to be privatised.
This would lessen the stress that has led to these organisations accruing debt, in Kuria’s opinion.
Kuria also claimed to be in discussions with financiers to work with institutions to improve their environments.
Wandayi asserted that Kuria’s transactional strategy, which is being promoted on behalf of his superiors, has no place in education.
He continued by saying that there are tried-and-true ways for the government to support public universities.
“Some Kenya Kwanza leaders are sitting somewhere and asking, why is the University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University or Egerton sitting on so much land? Why can’t I be given those university of Nairobi hostels to run and make money?” he posed.
He continued by saying that political meddling had to be eliminated from university administration.
The minority leader demanded that the William Ruto-led administration sufficiently support universities and choose competent managers on the basis of merit, as opposed to tribe, as is now the case.