Commission for University Education (CUE) will be reinstated its mandate of accrediting university programmes by government. This was recently announced by Chairman of CUE, Prof. Henry Thairu during a council meeting of Engineering Deans drawn from 11 universities in Kenya on July 4, 2016. The move comes at a time when the education sector is facing a hard task in producing well equipped graduates. Prof. Thairu observed that access to education still remains a challenge and there is need to refocus on quality and relevancy in university education.
The engineering committee formed in March 2014 by the former Education CS, Prof. Kaimenyi, aims at offering solutions to the problem of engineering accreditation whilst sharing information among deans on how to make the engineering fraternity better and great.
During his address, CUE Chairman congratulated the Deans for what has been happening and encouraged them to mentor each other as it is essential for professional development. However, he insisted that there is need for universities to have a sober interpretation of the law especially when it comes to matters dealing with accreditation and dual procedures from CUE and Engineers Board of Kenya.
Meanwhile, government plans to make big amendments to the University Act 2012, which was formed to amend the Universities Act Cap 210B of 1985. University of Nairobi, Dean School of Engineering, Prof Mbuthia reacted to this statement and stated that the Act needs to be passed to the Deans for further consultations and engagement.
“I wish to encourage the Deans to be on the lookout for the changes on the bill so as to encourage public participation and avoid incidences where the universities fall at logger heads with professional bodies when it comes to providing quality education,” he remarked.
Acting Dean, School of Engineering, Dedan Kimathi University of Technology, Dr. Eng. Jean Bosco urged the CUE Chairman that there needs to be a clear difference in the role of CUE and EBK in accrediting engineering programmes. Prof. Thairu responded by saying that when Deans invite EBK to their schools they need to do this in conjunction with CUE or rather they (CUE and EBK) should work together to participate in accreditation. CUE accredits and regulates university programmes while EBK develops and regulates engineering practice in Kenya.
In conclusion, the Chairman reiterated that it will continue being an enabling partner with education institutions in performing its mandate.