The Ministry of Education and Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) are collectively perturbed over the declining subsequent HELB applications.

While 43,000 students applied for the student loans last year, only half of this number has applied for a second allocation. It is now unclear why the other half has not made their applications yet as the October 31, 2019 deadline draws near.

This failure to apply for loans has the Ministry of Education supposing the students might have dropped out of school after just the first year. There other worry is, of the 98,000 who applied through the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) the first time, only 46,000 requests were received by HELB.

“We do not know where the other students are because we allocated them money previously and they are slow at making applications for subsequent years and this is a major challenge for us,” said Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) CEO Charles Ringera.

All students to get money

Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Principal Secretary Kevit Desai is now asking principals to take up the onus of sensitizing the students on the need to take up loans. He has further assured students that they will get the money they request for from HELB.

“HELB has assured us that this year all students will get the monies they request for. We previously had a challenge with allocations, with many dropping out for failing to top up the balance,” said Desai.

Ringera has further assured students who have applied for the loan already that they will receive the money ahead of the September opening dates. He encourages students who re yet to apply for the loan to do so before the October 31 deadline.

“We call upon the students who are yet to apply, to print and submit their Loan Application forms to hasten the process before the deadline of October 31, 2019,” he said.