An ongoing land transfer tussle between Kenyatta University (KU) and Kenyatta University Teaching, Referral and Research Hospital has reportedly led to the sacking of KU Vice-Chancellor, Paul Wainaina.
Kenyatta University VC sacked days after squabble with Uhuru
Not only was the VC removed but the KU council was also dissolved.
According to numerous reports, the VC appeared before students and staff on Tuesday morning, hinting that he is set to depart from the institution.
“This is the last day I’m talking to you as a VC. I understand a new council is being formed to that effect. That has happened because the university council and I refused to cede KU land,” Prof. Wainaina said.
The VC further revealed that the Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua sent a letter to the institution, insisting that the VC and council should surrender part of the land.
“The letter by the Head of Public Service Kinyua had directed us to give the land to the hospital after a decision was made by cabinet. We have told the Education CS that the university council doesn’t have the capacity to give land, but to protect it,” Wainaina said.
The VC in his address at the institution's amphitheater also broke down how the government plans to utilise the land.
“The letter indicated that 30 acres will be given to WHO for a project, 10 acres to the Centre for Disease Control, 180 acres to KUTRRH and another 190 acres will be used to settle Kamaye squatters,” he explained.
Uhuru faults Kenyatta University for clash with hospital
The new developments come only days after President Uhuru Kenyatta expressed displeasure against individuals whom he accused of delaying the construction of a World Health Organisation (WHO) regional and sub-global emergency operations and logistics hub on the specific land.
Speaking at Kenyatta University on Saturday, July 9, 2022, President Kenyatta cited a tassel regarding the ownership of the land on which the hub will be constructed. He said that the last weeks of his 10-year tenure would be dedicated to solving the dispute “swiftly and effectively.”
Kenyatta University has filed a complaint alleging that a WHO centre is being developed on their property without their authorisation.
However, according to Professor Wainaina, the parcel of land which will sit the WHO hub was to host a business school, a student recreation centre and hostels.
"We want to reduce the number of students staying off-campus who are exposed to crime and even death and provide accommodation for them. The taking of our land for other purposes is not in the interest of our students or the university,” Prof Wainaina said in a statement.
NYS deployed for takeover
He accused the government of using the National Youth Service (NYS) to invade the land and prepare it for the WHO ground-breaking ceremony.
"They overwhelmed our security team and proceeded to demolish the temporary perimeter fences and other structures on the land.
"They also brought in an excavator and bulldozer and in the morning the group proceeded to clear the land. I have not been informed by anyone what the activity on KU land is about,” he stated.
The vice-chancellor said he was not opposed to the construction of the facility but urged the government to involve the university’s management.
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