By Mbarak Abucheri:
The Kajiado based RAF International University has been officially approved and granted with Letter of Interim Authority(LIA) becoming the second Muslim University to be recognized by the government.
It was a momentous and historic occasion when the Education Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i handed over the LIA to the chairman of the Board of Trustees Dr Sheikh Muhammad Osman signifying the institution had met the requirements under the Universities Act and related regulations to provide University education.
RAF University was also granted Degree certifications to offer the same to students it will admit from now henceforth and it becomes the second Islamic oriented University in Kenya after Umma University.
The recognition of RAF University now brings to five the number of Islamic Universities in East Africa namely Islamic University In Uganda (IUIU), Zanzibar University, Morogoro Islamic University in Tanazania and Umma University in Kenya respectively.
While granting the letter, Matiang’i said it was a demonstration that the institution had fulfilled the conditions for setting up a university and expressed optimism that RAF International University will positively contribute to country’s national development strategy.
He pledged to provide support to the institution noting that under a new government policy, it will also be able to admit government sponsored students.
Dr. Matiang’i praised the leadership behind the University as trustworthy, patriotic and committed to provide quality university education.
In his speech, the CS urged universities to adhere to the statutes and regulations that guide provision of university education warning that institutions that flout the guidelines will be closed down.
He said violation of the standards by some universities was hurting reputation of Kenya and the education system in general. “We are going to take difficult and painful decisions to restore order in University Education,” Dr. Matiang’i noted as he expressed concern that some universities are admitting people without minimum entry requirements for university education.
Speaking at the event held at the education ministry headquarters, the chairman of the RAF University Board of Trustees, Dr. Muhammad Osman said the award was an endorsement of the capability of the institution to provide university education.
“We commit ourselves to providing higher education that meets the highest possible standards, quality and relevance in all aspects of university education, training and research that a university, anywhere should offer,” he said.
He gave an assurance that RAF International University will abide by the University Act and all the relevant regulations and guideline from the government as he observed that it will strive to instill knowledge and skills into students for the benefit of mankind.
Dr. Muhammad also expressed thanks to the RAF Foundation of Qatar for its continued support towards the university which boasts of ultra-modern facilities at its main campus located at the Nairobi-Namanga highway in Kisaju, Kajiado County.
In his remarks, the chairman of the Commission of University Education Prof. Chacha Nyaigoti observed that the university will facilitate more students to access education adding that it will further the growth of human resource for the country. “We trust we are supplying the creation of human capital for the country,” Prof. Chacha noted.
Present during the ceremony held at the education ministry headquarters at Jogoo House were the Cabinet Secretary for Industrialization Adan Muhammad, the Principal Secretary for education, Dr. Belio Kipsang and the Chief executive officer of the Commission for University Education Prof. David Some and senior officials from the ministry and the commission.
The Muslim leadership was represented by the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims (SUPKEM) secretary general Adan Wachu, Majlis Ulamaa Kenya chairman Sheikh Khalfan Khamis and the Jamia Mosque chairman Sheikh Muhammad Osman Warfa among other leaders.