Charles Ringera, the CEO of the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB), has refuted claims made by Babu Owino, the Member of Parliament for Embakasi East, regarding government funding for university students enrolled in the 2023/2024 academic year.
Ringera clarified that all students who meet the eligibility criteria for university admission will receive government funding. However, only 45,000 students will receive 100 per cent funding, while the remaining students will receive 93 per cent funding, with the family contributing the remaining 7 per cent.
The two categories of students who will receive full funding are those considered vulnerable and extremely needy.
Owino had previously asserted on his social media account that out of approximately 800,000 students expected to enrol in universities this year, only 45,000 would be sponsored by the government.
“That means a parent whose child has been called to take a social science course will be required to pay around Sh300,000 each year, which means for a four-year course, the parent must part with Sh1.2m to take their kids to school, while for a medical course, you need Sh600,000 per year which is not possible,” stated Owino.
The Embakasi East MP said the new system will lock out deserving students; therefore, the government should return to the old system where everyone who qualifies for university is supported.
Ringera countered this claim, stating that 869,782 students had taken the KCSE examination the previous year. Of those, only 173,127 achieved the minimum entry grade for university admission, a C+.
140,107 students applied and were accepted into various programs at public universities in the country.
Ringera encouraged students to continue applying for government funding through the Higher Education Fund website, with the application deadline approaching on September 7.