A university will be established in Nyandarua before this year’s end, His Excellency Governor Francis Kimemia has declared.
Speaking at his office in Ol’Kalou when he received a report from a technical committee looking into the matter, the Governor said studies will begin at the Agriculture Training College (ATC) in Ol’Jororok and the former Nyandarua County Council offices in the next few weeks.
“We will start with what we have, even as we start construction of the main campus at Kapteni, in Ol’Kalou Sub-County,” he said.
During campaigns ahead of the recent General Election, the Governor had pledged to establish the university within 100 days, with satellite campuses in Kipipiri, Ndaragwa, Kinangop and Ol’Jororok sub-counties.
Today, he said he had already reached out to the Office of the President for additional support.
“We have contacted the State Department of Education and the President through the Secretary of Cabinet and Head of Public Service, Mr. Joseph Kinyua. They will send a technical team to get us going in the next two weeks,” he said.
The Governor noted that courses at the university should be responsive to needs of the people, including economics, tourism, forestry and agriculture, so as to secure Nyandarua’s future as Kenya’s food basket.
“We will start public participation in the next two weeks in our five sub-counties so that people can specifically tell us what they want their children to study at the institution, and help us plan for other scientific, technological and agricultural institutions,” he said.
The Governor said cost will not be an issue.
“Of course we are looking into the budget and the need for seed capital, but we are not worried about the billions needed. We have a President, parents and a County Government that is willing to build a university with over 50,000 students. We want to ride on this goodwill to make this dream happen,” he said.
He added: “This is history in the making. It’s going to be one of the most interesting times for the people of Nyandarua. They have longed for a university since 2011. It will be a reality. We will fast-track it. This is my commitment to our people.”
The technical team, led by its chairperson Prof. Gerald Kimani, said that the institution’s future was now clearer.
“It was long overdue. Now the Governor has a road map for its future,” he said.
Also present were Her Excellency Deputy Governor (Mrs.) Cecilia Mbuthia, Acting County Secretary Mr. Daniel Irungu, County Executive Committee members Peter Macharia (Education) and Ammon Kinyanjui (Finance and Economic Planning), among other senior County Government officials.