Chaos at Magadi Road as Multimedia University students go on a rampage
Chaos erupted on Magadi Road during the Tuesday morning rush hour as students from Multimedia University took to the streets to voice their demands.
The unexpected demonstration left motorists stranded, forcing them to seek alternative routes through Gatanga Road.
At the time of going to press, neither the institution nor the protesting students had issued official statements explaining the cause of the strike.
However, various reports by students indicate that they are agitating for the release of funds by the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB). Some also claim they have issues with their missing marks and poor sanitation in hostels.
Some students who spoke to Nairobi News claimed that their results have been delayed, yet they are supposed to graduate later this month.
“Graduation is coming on October 27, 2023, yet some of us are yet to get our results, how long does it take to release them,” one of the students wondered.
Local authorities were yet to arrive at the scene to contain the situation as students, in their hundreds, blocked the road, hurled rocks, and set bonfires along the busy stretch.
This sudden strike comes at a time when Embakasi East Member of Parliament Babu Owino has made a public call for HELB to expedite the disbursement of funds to students.
In a video statement on his social media, MP Owino expressed deep concern over the financial hardship faced by students due to delayed disbursement.
“Comrades are very hungry and angry at the same time. Students cannot go to class because HELB has not been released, hence they cannot pay fees,” he declared.
Owino went on to emphasize the dire circumstances, stating, “Students cannot buy food, they cannot afford accommodation, and they cannot get money for transport.”
The parliamentarian directed his appeal to the Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Ndung’u, urging swift collaboration with HELB to ensure the immediate release of funds.
“Move with speed and release money to comrades in various universities. HELB must never delay. This money is very little and it is never sufficient, and furthermore, you are delaying it,” he asserted.
Furthermore, Owino called upon student leaders across the country to rally for the release of these funds.
“Student leaders, you are sleeping. You are wasting the constituents who elected you. You must wake up, you must come out, you must call for demonstrations,” he urged.
While advocating for peaceful protests, Owino cautioned against damaging public or school property during demonstrations. “Never destroy school property, never destroy any property of the public. Just hold peaceful demonstrations and let it be on a daily basis,” he advised.
Notably, Owino, who formerly served as the president of the Kenya Universities Students Organization (KUSO) before his election to parliament, recalled that during his tenure, HELB funds were consistently released on time.
More to follow
Also read: How to check your HELB loan status