Kenyans encouraged to adopt open university model as it is cheaper

ICT CS Eliud Owalo speaking at Weru TVC, Malindi. He encouraged Kenyans to enroll in Open University of Kenya to save on costs.

ICT Cabinet Secretary (CS) Eliud Owalo has called on more Kenyans to adopt the open university learning model, saying it is much cheaper and more convenient.

Revealing that over 2000 students have so far joined it, he said the module has been initiated through the Konza Metropolis.

“You only need a phone or a computer to join,” he said.

Speaking at Weru TVC in Malindi where he opened a digital hub, Owalo said the facility is the 205th in the country and other 1,450 are in the pipeline in all Wards, pointing out that TVETs in rural areas are the next stop.

The CS said a total of 490,000 youth have so far been trained on digital technology, revealing that the government will now be using Kenya Power lines to connect fibre cables.

“We are shifting from the traditional method of laying fibre cables underground, which is prone to vandalism. Instead, we will utilize KPC transmission lines,” Owalo said, adding that KPC has already engaged 300 contractors, distributed evenly across the country, to begin the project.

“We will extend fibre connectivity to all existing 74,000 transformers. Once fibre is connected to these transformers, we can provide internet access to nearby institutions and public spaces such as market centres,” the CS noted.

The CS assured that with the digital transformation led by the Kenya Kwanza administration, Kenyans will benefit from efficient and effective government services without needing personal connections in government offices.

“It will be a direct interaction between you as a Kenyan, your phone, and the government. You won’t need to know anyone in a government office to access these services. You will be able to apply for an ID or a passport virtually,” he explained.

Owalo asserted that the country’s efforts to produce affordable smartphones are progressing well, with increasing market demand indicating the initiative’s potential for significant success.

“We recognize that many Kenyans still lack access to smartphones. The government, in collaboration with the private sector, has initiated the assembly of affordable Kenyan smartphones locally. This means we won’t need to import phones from countries like China or Korea,” he stated.

The Neon brand handsets, retailing at Ksh7,499 per unit, are available at all Safaricom branches or the Jamii Telecom shops countrywide.


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By Fredrick Odiero  

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