Tribalism and corruption have been flagged as the main threat to academic standards as well as infrastructural development at the University of Kabianga where tender wars seems is the order of the day.
The university located in Kabianga Division in Kericho County last Friday celebrated its 7th graduation ceremony amidst begging questions regarding the leadership arrangement, dominated by the Kalenjins.
Formation of the University’s council members and head of deans is a reflection of deep seated tribalism at the institution, roundly blamed for a range matters including poor management.
Weekly Citizen can now authoritatively expose faces behind the stinking tribalism at the University situated in the famous and lush tea-growing highlands of Kericho in the South-Western end of the Rift Valley.
In the worrying trend of alarming tribalism right from the management board, deans to the director, it’s the names of the Kalinjins which have prominently featured.
Imperative to note, Prof Wilson Kipngeno is the Vice-Chancellor under a management board that also boats of a host of his tribesmen including Prof Eric Koech, CPA Willy Koech, Ms Janet Nankui (Librarian), Dr. Cecillia Sang (Academic), Mr Kipkoech Kimalel (Admin), Dr Rev Edwin Too (PR and D) and Mr. Geoffrey Sowek (ICT director).
Sadly, out of the 8 management board members, there are only three individuals from other tribes, Prof Elijah Omwenga(DVC,A and SA), Prof Maurice Oduor (DVC,PRD) and Ms Ayuma Robai (Legal Officer).
In a similar pattern Dr. Peter Cheruiyot is the Dean of school of Business and economics, Dr. Harrison Bii (Dean, School of Information Science and knowledge mangament) and Dr. Joyce Kiplimo (Dean, Science and Technology).
Worst hit is the directors section which has Dr. Janet Kombich (Director, Kericho town campus), Mr. Kipkirui Rono (Director, Sotik Campus), Dr. Erick Mibei (Director Kapkatet campus), Dr. Hellen Sang (Director, Gender Development), Dr. Andrew Kipkosgey (Director, Quality Assurance), Prof Joash Kibett (Director, board of graduate studies) and Mr. Geoffrey Sowek (ICT director).
For starters, the University is grappling with a range of dubious deals and the architects of the dirty deals are people speaking the same language.
A highlight of some of the questionable operations at the University is a damning report released by the outgoing Auditor General Edward Ouko which revealed a widespread of financial mismanagement.
Ouko pointed to a possible escalation of the sh1, 075,100 Pineapple plant project which has now come back to haunt those involved.
Relatively, in what appears to be a defense mechanism the intuition’s council chairman Dr. Florence Nyamu has strongly come out to announce that the project was on course.
Weekly Citizen could not independently establish whether Nyamu directly benefited from the loot but she managed to sneak her defense inside her graduation day message in a handsomely paid Newspaper advertisement ahead of the institution’s 7th graduation ceremony last Friday.
She noted that the University is implementing the fruit juice processing plant to process pineapple juice and other fruits towards realization of the pillar on food security.
Students at the University are a dejected lot and many negative happenings have been blamed on the style of leadership setup including cases where the institution has been repeatedly treated to public ridicule for issuing public notices with grammatical errors.
In a most recent case, the error in communication targeting fourth-year students drew the ire of students who faulted the institution for its ineptitude.
This and other myriads of similar issues have turned the university into a laughing stock and students from other universities now refer to Kabianga as a localized university and should therefore be forgiven for such errors seemingly driven by vernacular influence.
There are also claims that Gatundu Member of parliament Moses Kuria is entangled in the controversial sh1.2 billion construction tender at the University.
According to irate group of professionals from Rift Valley region, Kuria is associated with the company that was awarded the tender to revamp and construct the university.
The professional had questioned the tender awarding process and demanded for an explanation on how the alleged legislator’s company got the lucrative tender at the expense of all the qualified Bomet County contractors.