Though cooking under rules and regulations governing students conduct at Moi university bars cooking or preparation of food inside hostels, the institution has denied claims that it has effected the clause. In a memo directed to all staff and students, the DVC Prof. Nathan O Ogechi has denied information that has been doing rounds that the activity is abolished and anyone found will be severely punished.
“This office has received intelligence reports about some people who are spreading rumours that the university has banned comrades from preparing meals.
….the university management has neither discussed or banned preparation of meals inside hostels” the notice by the DVC narrates.
News had gone round sending chills across the lot staying in hostels inside campus. Recent proceedings showed that the university has been trying to effect certain changes. The Vice chancellor Prof Laban Ayiro had given the students fraternity a surety that he would change the image of the university and revolutionize its operations to increase its effectiveness.
The changes many students believe will leave a positive mark at the institution but the recent notice that there will be closure of cooking inside hostels had started gathering a wind of resistance from them. A number of students told the News desk that it would be suicidal for Moi university to implement the clause arguing that it will be an instant recipe to chaos.
“We will not allow the student leadership and university management to blackmail us and make our lives unbearable. No one will allow them to ban cooking inside hostels. This is an instant recipe to chaos. Prof. Laban Ayiro knows it and we expect his actions to be justifiable” a 3rd year student who only identified himself as Cleophas told Magazine Reel.
Other students also saw the alleged move as a way of making the over 10,000 students boost sales in university cafeterias. A number said that due to poor quality of food in the university cafeteria and their cost implications, most of them prefer cooking their own meals. The group suggested that the low sales turnover had worried the management who are in dire need of funds to run the institution and banning cooking inside hostel was a method arrived at to remedy the situation.
Business owners especially those with food kiosks inside the university also read a bad motive after they were asked to relocate their kiosks towards the campus stage. They supported the students’ claims that the university was indeed focused in banning cooking inside hostels.
Moi university management had said that all the changes to be made will be aimed at reducing the cost of running activities and eliminating corruption at the institution. The Auditor general through his report released months ago claimed that the university could not account for close 1 Billion shillings. Edward Ouko led team of auditors said that the university had more than a thousand ghost workers who were being paid on a monthly basis.
According to the university management, cooking inside halls of residence is only not allowed because of the dangers involved but not because of the cost implications associated with it. Sources privy to the management meetings point out that the university might introduced ‘Kitchenettes’, building on the success that was seen when Egerton university introduced the same in 2010. At Egerton, students are only allowed to cook inside specials rooms fitted with electric coils. The rooms are referred to as kitchenettes and are evenly distributed inside the Njoro campus.