Plans finalised to give Budalang'i her first university next year

Professor Jacob Wakhungu of Masinde Muliro Varsity talks to Journalists in Budalangi after a consultative forum with area residents. 26/10/2014 Picture Chrispen Sechere

Busia; Kenya: Budalang'i residents are set to get a university college on their soil.

Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) will early next year open a constituent college in the flood-prone area of Busia County.

Bunyala Institute of Science and Technology, a CDF-funded project, has also received Sh140 million boost from the World Bank to assist in its construction expected to be through at end of this year.

Area residents led by MP Ababu Namwamba and a team from MMUST led by Jacob Wakhungu held an open consultative forum at Bunyala Disaster Management Rescue Centre at the weekend where courses to offered at the college were discussed.

The teams later inspected the ongoing construction at the institute which is at the final phase.

The university will have a 300-bed capacity to cater for regular programme students and unlimited number of self sponsored ones.

Good bit

"The good bit with this facility is that the 300-bed capacity is not to determine the admission number. We are an institution that offers visual learning that can accommodate thousands across board. What the e-learners ought to do is only come sit exams and the institution bed capacity should not hinder anyone from registering," said Prof Wakhungu.

The disaster management professor promised to start off the institute with courses that are of essence to the residents.

"We are likely to start off with disaster and marine oriented courses like fisheries, marine technology, water engineering and disaster management that will be of essence to the community around this institute before bringing on board other courses," he said.

Mr Namwamba said he remained optimistic that despite the hard times Budalang'i residents faced, it could soon grow to an academia city.

"When you hear of Budalang'i, you easily relate it to floods and all sorts of calamities but that will soon be in the past if we embrace education. We cannot always grow through the conservative ways of industrialization. Look at Boston which is a world class city thanks to education. It has many top range universities and there is where Budalangi is going," he said.


The MP also gave 80 self-help groups and 15 youth groups Sh17.5 million and Sh3.5 million loans from the Uwezo Fund and Youth development fund kitty respectively.

He told youth and women groups to capitalise on the loans and do business because getting formal employment is a challenge.

Meanwhile all primary school-going girls in the county are set to benefit from a support programme launched over the weekend.

Among the sponsors of the initiative whose launch was presided over by area Governor Sospeter Ojaamong's wife Judy Ojaamong are Inter-Consumer, Inter Child Support and the Co-operative Bank.

Mrs Ojaamong said the programme would rescue the girl-child and the vulnerable children in the county who used to drop out of school due to lack of sanitary towels, writing materials and other essential personal effects.

Well-wishers donated sanitary towels, underpants, geometrical sets and writing material worth over
Sh0.5 million.