Over the last eight weeks, student unrests have been witnessed in extremes all over the country.
Kenyatta University set the pace pointing to issues not limited to management complaints, fees increment and insecurity towards the end of September.
Over the weeks that followed, several other universities including Masinde Muliro, Moi University, Garissa University and Pwani University followed suit. This led to the indefinite closure of the institutions.
The most recent unrest at the Jomo Kenyatta University (JKUAT) raised lots of eyebrows. This was not because of its nature but its course where a female student was brutally beaten by police officers.
From memos released by Student Governing Council Bodies of these universities, most of the grievances put forward were almost similar across all these very diverse learning institutions which beg the question, is it a management issue or does the Council of University Education need to review their work plans?
Following a press statement made by Embakasi East MP Paul Ongili alias Babu Owino on October 12 2019; he alleged in his statement that university managements were 'manufacturing' strikes in order to raise funds to clear arrears with the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), which had earlier threatened to sue University Vice-Chancellors for failing to remit tax returns.
Do we ask ourselves how it is possible to have similar problems across institutions in diverse geographic locations and separate managements?
I think it's time the Council for University Education gets a wake-up call. The Ministry of Education under the leadership of Cabinet Secretary, Prof George Magoha, needs to come up with a better strategy to manage student grievances especially in instances where the grievances may not be solved internally.
However, this does not leave out university managements. University managements should also come up with better strategies to dialogue out grievances with thier chief stakeholders; students.
Equal involvement between administrations and students should also be observed as it guarantees absolute dialogue and fair settlements.