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Top Ugandan varsity fails Kenya quality test

Kenya’s Commission for Higher Education secretary Prof David Some addresses journalists during the national stakeholders workshop on ranking criteria for universities at the Kenya School of Monetary Studies in Nairobi.

One of the most popular universities in East Africa is not accredited, according to the Commission for Higher Education (CHE).

This means that thousands of Kenyans who graduated from Kampala International University (KIU) in the last ten years or so were awarded qualifications not recognised in Kenya.

Three of the applicants for the posts of Inspector-General of Police and deputies were disqualified because their certificates from KIU were not recognised by CHE.

“This is a cause for alarm. The institution is not chartered and therefore any papers from KIU cannot be recognised in Kenya,” CHE Chief Executive David Some told the Nation on Wednesday in an interview.

“When students graduate from KIU, the commission cannot undertake ‘equation for qualification’ of their papers, meaning that they are not qualified according to the Kenyan standards,” he added.

Prof Some spoke days after Ugandan authorities directed KIU to stop awarding 42 PhD degrees, saying it lacked capacity to mount the courses.

The National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) of Uganda stopped KIU from awarding the PhDs on the eve of its graduation ceremony until they were verified. Of the 42, officials said 30 were to be awarded to Kenyan students.

The New Vision of Uganda reported that the PhD students were about to graduate when NCHE said the institution did not have the capacity to pass out such degrees.

NCHE Executive Director A B K Kasozi is reported to have written to the office of the university’s vice-chancellor stopping the graduation.

Prof Kasozi set out conditions for KIU to beat before the 42 PhD students can be allowed to graduate, which included submission of the external examiners’ reports on each of the students, the period each student had taken to complete the programme and the list of external and internal examiners.

Prof Some said Kenyans need to do background checks before they enrol in the institutions.

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