Comrades in despair despite excitement of the New Year
What you need to know:
- Administration officers in different institutions of higher learning have already set fee payment deadlines even without bothering to consult with the students.
- They are unlikely to consider the fact that Helb is usually disbursed late, and some students come from poor backgrounds. What a dictatorial form of governance!
Even though 2023 is here, brand new and promising good tidings, comrades are already in deep thought, wondering how they will manage this year’s academic expenses. Landlords and caretakers are eagerly waiting for us to return to school so that they can collect from us the semesterly wages, read hostel rent.
Administration officers in different institutions of higher learning have already set fee payment deadlines even without bothering to consult with the students. They are unlikely to consider the fact that Helb is usually disbursed late, and some students come from poor backgrounds. What a dictatorial form of governance!
And speaking of governance, food prices have extremely shot up, making it difficult for students to afford even one meal a day. Whenever we feel hungry, we pause and ask ourselves, “Should I buy food, pay rent or clear my fee balance? Believe me, my classmates and I were yet to make a decision when we heard from the news that our government plans to abolish the Higher Education Loan Board (HELB), which basically means no loans.
Comrades are already wallowing in depression even as the government plans to reconstruct the student loans’ body. I understand that our country has a debt of over Sh8 trillion, but where is the wisdom in letting university students suffer in this harsh economy and perhaps even die before servicing their HELB loan? If that happens, who will help repay the Sh8 trillion debt?
Mr President, kindly show some mercy to comrades and let HELB stay. That fund enables students to pay part of the school fees, rent and even remain with some few coins for the daily sukuma wiki.
Prove your love for education by setting up more funding bodies that will sustain comrades in various higher learning institutions across the country.
Antony Achayo is a student leader at Rongo University