Ethnic universities are untenable, unacceptable

Acting Moi University VC Laban Ayiro. /FILE
Acting Moi University VC Laban Ayiro. /FILE

Two governors and several MPs yesterday stormed Moi University to stop newly appointed acting vice chancellor Laban Ayiro from taking over (see page 22).

Education CS Fred Matiang’i appointed Prof Ayiro to replace the outgoing VC Richard Mibey. However, governors Jackson Mandago of Uasin Gishu and Alex Tolgos of Elgeyo Marakwet led the four MPs to the university to reject the appointment on ethnic grounds.

The politicians want Prof Isaac Kosgey appointed the new VC. They threatened to cut down trees and stop a graduation ceremony on Friday unless Kosgey is installed.

This kind of attitude and intimidation in an academic setting is untenable and unacceptable. Senior academic positions should never be ethnicised. The running of universities should be left to the professionals.

The universities in the counties should be making every effort to attract students and staff from all over the country to ensure the institutions are national and not parochial and bigoted schools.

If higher education becomes tribe-based, Kenya will have no future.