- UoN vice chancellor Stephen Kiama says the institution will not increase fees anytime soon.
Kiama asks the government led by President William Ruto to work on removing the burden from parents.
The University of Nairobi has distanced itself from the recent push by vice chancellors to increase tuition fees.
Two weeks ago, vice chancellors called for an upward review of fees in public universities citing the rising costs of living.
However, UoN vice chancellor Stephen Kiama has said the institution will not increase fees anytime soon.
He spoke on Tuesday during a breakfast meeting, where the UoN foundation received cheques supporting the fund.
The VC said increasing tuition fees would see a number of ‘vulnerable’ students drop out.
“It’s important parents are not burdened too much because some good brains may drop out because they cannot afford,” he said.
Kiama instead asked the government led by President William Ruto to work on removing the burden from parents.
“As we do other budgets for loans, infrastructure and other programmes, we should also budget for universities,” Kiama said.
He asked Ruto’s government to come up with a long term solution to financing public universities.
Kiama suggested the government comes up with sustainable loans or student grants.
“It’s important to rethink this whole process and structure it in that when they finish, they pay to support others,” he said.
The body mandated to provide student grants is the Universities Funding Board.
Kiama said the government should increase its capitation towards Universities Funding Board.
The VC further clarified that no lecturer will lose their job despite the scrapping of common units at the university.
“Most of them are attached to a department and so they will continue teaching other units,” he said.
Kiama said the university scrapped the units because of their lack of relevance to the current generation of students.
“What’s appropriate for this generation is environment, climate change, entrepreneurship, innovation. Not those that were designed during Nyayo philosophy,” he said.
The affected courses are communication skills, fundamentals of development and their applications, human health, law in society, environment science and chemistry and its applications.
Others are science and technology in development, elements of philosophy, elements of economics and HIV-Aids.
The courses will not be offered at the university effective from the 2022-20223 academic year.
The director of Information and Communication Technology was asked to withdraw the units from the school system.
In a communiqué read by the programme coordinator Ndirangu Kioni, the VCs had called for a policy review to increase fees.
Kioni said the government should enroll students that they are able to fund.
"The students should pay realistic tuition fees. Thus, review the Sh16,000 tuition payable since 1992," he said.
In the differentiated unit cost funding formula, the government gives 80 per cent of the funds.
The remaining percentage is to be acquired from school fees and internal programmes.
But the VC's said the government does not fully implement the 80 per cent.
"The government should fund the DUC at the agreed 80 per cent to facilitate smooth running and operations in the universities," they said.
The VC's mandated universities, Ministry of Education, Helb, UFB, and KUCCPS to deal with the concerns before the next student admission.
The next group of university students' intake will be in January.
In 2021, UoN hostel fee was increased sevenfold, from Sh6,000 per year to Sh40,000 per year.
Tuition fee was also increased from Sh28,000 per academic year to almost Sh59,000 per semester.
(Edited by Bilha Makokha)