University Degree Requirement Sparks Mixed Reactions

The requirement that aspirants for elective positions in both the national and  County Assemblies must be degree holders continue to elicit mixed reaction in the country.

In Kiambu, most people seem to be contended with the new requirement on grounds that leadership entails knowledgeability to articulate legislative duties and oversight.

Doctor Robert Oduori, a senior lecturer at Moi University says education system is meant for such purposes as to mold leaders. Quoting school mottoes such as “education is the key to success,” he stated that a country cannot succeed without enlightened leaders. Otherwise, what would be the reason to subject a whole nation and have illiterate leaders.

He added that with a degree, one is exposed to different environments and people therefore have knowledge on how to deal with different situations. Moreover, development cannot begin from the highest level, but should rather begin from the base, where the MPs and MCAs hold proper academic credentials.

Samuel Muana, a resident of Kiambu town said that degrees should be a qualification because the MCAs and MPs represent people and should have knowledge of what people need.

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He however expressed his doubt about the authenticity of the degrees, stating that there is very little time for the aspirants to acquire degrees legally and many might end up forging them in the backstreet. He wishes that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission would subject the degrees to verification through certified agencies prior to clearance to run.

Valentine Wanjiru, who is a graduate and a fruit vendor at the Kiambu market supports the new law to have MCAS and MPS hold degrees saying many youth were educated but getting wasted due to lack of employment opportunities.

The new law came to foece recently after it was shelved during the 2017 polls has been pending after aspirants who did not have degrees  requested for time to acquire the required academic qualification. Speaking during the launch of the IEBC annual voters Education Week on 14th June in Bomas of Kenya, the IEBC chairperson n Wafula Chebukati said that the law would take effect in the 2022 general elections.

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