Varsity funding suffers further as legislators chop it by over Ksh90 million
Parliament has now reduced funding to the State Department for Higher Education and Research by Ksh94.44 million, even as they block government from funding private universities.
This is contained in a report on the Budget Policy Statement (BPS) for the 2023/2024 Financial Year (FY) and the Medium Term by the National Assembly’s (NA) Committee on Budget and Appropriation, which was tabled by the committee’s chairperson Ndindi Nyoro and approved on March 15, 2023.
The adoption of the report now paves way for the National Treasury to prepare and present the budget estimates to the National Assembly by April 30 as decreed by the Constitution and the Public Finance Management Act.
According to the report, the legislators reduced funding for the state department by Ksh94.4 (94,448,399) million to Ksh116.8 (116,897,500,000) billion.
This includes a recurrent expenditure of Ksh111.5 (111,509,500,000) billion and a capital expenditure of Ksh5.3 (5,388,000,000) billion.
The National Treasury, in its 2023 BPS, had proposed a total allocation of Ksh116.99 billion, which had a recurrent expenditure of Ksh111.6 billion and capital expenditure of Ksh5.388 billion.
This included a proposed allocation of Ksh115.8 billion on university education, where Ksh110.5 billion was recurrent expenditure and Ksh5.2 billion capital expenditure.
Research, science, technology and innovation was allocated Ksh847 million, where Ksh743 million was recurrent expenditure and Ksh104 million capital expenditure.
A total of Ksh334 million was allocated to recurrent expenditure for administration, planning and support services. The development comes at a time when the government is struggling to fund public universities that are choked with debts amounting to over Ksh56 billion.
Data from the Universities Fund Kenya, which is a state agency mandated to allocate funds to universities, reveals a funding gap of university education for the last four years.