Uhuru awards Charter to first Islamic university in Kenya
NAIROBI, Kenya - Umma University became the first Islamic university to be awarded a Charter in Kenya after complying with all requirements set by Commission for University Education and Ministry of Education, Garowe Online reports.
President Uhuru Kenyatta awarded the Charter on Friday at Mombasa State House, where he was flanked by a host of the institution's administration and Islamic scholars.
During the function, Uhuru presented the University Charter, Mace, Logo, Seal and two volumes of the Accreditation Report to Umma University officials, effectively making it a full-fledged institution.
"Universities should develop and nurture partnerships with the private sector and county governments geared towards finding solutions to some of the challenges facing Kenyans," Uhuru said.
The institution is located in Kajiado County situated around 70 kilometers from the capital Nairobi. It has two other satellite campuses at Thika and within Nairobi CBD.
Umma University, despite having links to the Islamic religion, it admits students from all social-economic and religion backgrounds. Students can take degrees, diplomas and certificate courses.
Kenya's National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale hailed President Kenyatta for 'always keeping his promises' adding that the institution meets requisites for modern education.
"I take this opportunity to thank President Uhuru Kenyatta for always keeping his promise to the Muslim Umma. @UmmaUniversity is a modern prestigious university for all Kenyan students. They offer quality education and contribute to the development of the country," he tweeted.
Former Red Cross Secretary General Abbas Gullet, who attended the function, paid tributes to God besides hailing President Uhuru for helping the Muslim community for the historic achievement.
"Umma University becomes the first Islamic University to be awarded a charter in Kenya. I thank Allah for getting us here. I also thank His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta," said Gullet.
The institution will now be allowed to admit a few government-sponsored students from Kenya. It joins the list of prestigious institutions such as Strathmore University and United States International University.
For centuries, Islamic University In Uganda has remained one of normal Islamic higher learning institutions within East Africa, a status that could be rivaled by Umma. It was established in 1988.
Although it won't get much funding from the Kenyan government, the institution will nonetheless benefit from the enrollment of government-sponsored students whose tuition is paid by the state.