Governor Bii addresses looming deportation of Uasin Gishu students in Finland
- Governor Jonathan Bii has however distanced himself from the matter, saying it was never the county's responsibility to cater for their fees abroad.
- As at now, there are 111 students from Uasin Gishu County studying in Tampere University, 25 in Jyvaskyla University and 66 in Laurea University.
Hundreds of students from Uasin Gishu County who have been studying in Finland are on the verge of being deported over school fees arrears.
Governor Jonathan Bii has however distanced himself from the matter, saying it was never the county's responsibility to cater for their fees abroad.
"The programme was ran independently of county government by a trust and no public funds were used to fund the programme. This therefore means that no public funds will be allocated to fund this programme," Bii said during a presser on Sunday.
Having succeeded Jackson Mandago in August last year, Governor Bii said he had to set up a taskforce to look into the scholarship issue after numerous complaints.
It appears that the 202 students who are currently in Finland could not make it into their second semester of their first year as fees is due by March 31, 2023.
As at now, there are 111 students from Uasin Gishu County studying in Tampere University, 25 in Jyvaskyla University and 66 in Laurea University. This cohort travelled between September 2021 and 2022.
Fifty six students are still in Kenya but have completed their first semester studies online. They are awaiting to join their colleagues in Tampere University this year, on condition that they clear second semester fees by March 31.
The third cohort comprises of 48 students expected to join Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology to pursue engineering courses. Governor Bii said their first year fees as well as travel and accommodation expenses were cleared.
Students from Tampere and Laurea universities are expected to pay an average of 4,100 euros (KSh544,000) for the second semester due this month.
Parents to the 384 students have reportedly held a series of meetings with the county and universities seeking truce on the matter.
"Jyvaskyla and Laurea universities have given us March 31 as the deadline while Tampere declined to extend their February 28 deadline and ended their corporation with Uasin Gishu County. They are willing to continue with the programme if parents meet their obligations," the governor said of their meetings.
He reiterated that the county government only offered to act as a guarantor but the burden of catering for fees and travel expenses was left to parents.
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) is already carrying out a forensic audit on the trust trust fund, which was rumoured to operating as a personal account.
- Advertisement -