• The students include 32,000 in secondary schools and 8,000 in tertiary institutions.
• She said her administration is committed to increasing funds to ensure no needy student drops out of school or college because of fees.
The Kirinyaga government has allocated Sh110 million for bursaries to benefit 40,000 students.
The kitty was rolled out at the county headquarters in Kutus on Tuesday by Governor Anne Waiguru. It targets bright students in all 20 wards. Of the students, 32,000 are in secondary schools and 8,000 in tertiary institutions.
Waiguru said this year's kitty is the biggest allocation for the programme so far. She said her administration is committed to increasing funds to ensure no needy student drops out of school or college because of fees.
"The vetting process was carried out in a very transparent manner. The beneficiaries have up to January 19 to get their cheques from their respective MCA ward offices," she said.
The county boss further pleaded with school managements to desist from taking advantage of the programme to increase fees.
The county chief also flagged off 140,000 masks and water tanks to be distributed to ECDE centres. She urged all learning institutions to comply with Ministry of Health Covid-19 protocols.
The county Health department has partnered with schools to monitor the health of learners. About 484 Covid cases have been confirmed in the county. Of the number, about 441 patients have recovered and seven have died.
Waiguru said the ongoing construction of Kerugoya Ultramodern Hospital is at an advanced stage. She noted that the county has so far purchased more than 300 beds that will come in handy upon completion of the facility.
"The hospital will not only serve residents, but also patients from within the region as it will play host to critical departments like an ICU, an HDU and a cancer centre," she said, promising to work closely with MCAs to build dispensaries in their wards.
And to spur development, Waiguru said they have lined up a number of projects this year, top among them the construction of tomato and avocado in Kangai and Kanyeki ini wards respectively.
The county will also help dairy farmers with equipment necessary for the improvement of their produce.
On the proposed constitutional amendments through a referendum, the governor urged the BBI campaign steering committee to move with speed and distribute copies of the document to wananchi to enable them to read and make informed decisions.
MCAs present hailed the improved working relationship between the county assembly and the executive, noting that it has eased tension in the county, promoted cohesiveness and steered development.
Led by Majority leader Kamau Murango ,the ward reps said the bursary will go a long way in assisting disadvantaged parents who are already overwhelmed with economic hardship worsened by the Covid-19 crisis.
Kepha Kariuki, a nominated MCA representing the youth, said the programme should be strengthened to benefit more students and included in county plans.