SPEECH BY THE COUNCIL CHAIRPERSON, DURING THE 4TH GRADUATION CEREMONY OF THE CO-OPERATIVE UNIVERSITY OF KENYA ON FRIDAY 6TH DECEMBER 2019
Chief Guest, The Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Trade, Industry and Co-operatives, Hon. Peter Munya
Cabinet Secretary Ministry Of Education, Prof George Magoha
The CAS MOE and PS State Department of University Education and Research, Prof. Collete Suda
The Chairpersons of the university councils present
The Co-operative University of Kenya Council Members,
The Vice Chancellor of the Co-operative University of Kenya, Prof. Kamau Ngamau
Vice Chancellors and Deputy Vice Chancellors of other Universities present
Deputy Vice Chancellors of CUK
Distinguished guests and leaders of the co-operative movement,
Parents and guardians
Our 2019 Graduands
Ladies and Gentlemen
I take this opportunity to welcome you all to The Cooperative University of Kenya on our 4th Graduation Ceremony as a university since the award of a charter. I am humbled to convey to you all my warm greetings and those of the entire University Council and those of the University Community. We feel highly honoured by your presence with us here today and feel quite appreciated.
In the same vein, I aptly congratulate the CUK class of 2019 on your graduation today; you did put lots of effort to be where you are today. We are all happy for you and congratulations once again.
Our chief guest, Ladies and gentlemen, as a council we are particularly pleased with the strides the university continues to make in the areas of programme development and research. The university management under the leadership of the Vice Chancellor, Prof Kamau Ngamau, continues to make significant strides in realizing the vision of the university to be a centre of quality co-operative training. This seats in very well with this year’s theme “Ço-operatives in a changing ecosystem” and we are particularly pleased with the number of graduands who will be graduating today with an intention of making a difference in the co-operative ecosystem. Co-operatives around the world and in our own country require special mention and recognition due to the fundamental role they play in promoting socio-economic development. According to the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA), the Co-operative movement brings together over one billion people around the world, and that the livelihood of nearly half of the world’s population is made secure by co-operative enterprises. They provide income, job opportunities and avenues for social and economic development. In Kenya alone, 63% of the population derive their livelihoods from Co-operatives. Furthermore, the co-operative movement generates about 45% of the country’s Growth Domestic Product (GDP). It is important to mention this interesting statistics for the avoidance of doubt that indeed there are a lot of opportunities that this great movement presents for our graduands
Ladies and Gentlemen,
My council is leaving no stone unturned in supporting the University management board and the senate in ensuring that the quality of teaching and research at CUK is top-notch. If you move around the university, you will notice some major infrastructural development, most of which the Vice Chancellor has mentioned in his speech. It is our commitment as a council that the growth in students numbers goes hand in hand with infrastructural development. We shall continue to accord the university management the support they need to execute the university’s mandate and also put them to the task to ensure that the heavy investments we continue to make are properly utilized for the benefit of the students. We are currently in the process of sourcing for partners, under the Private Public Partnership (PPP) model, investors who will put up world-class accommodation facilities. To this end, the university in her 2017-2072 Master plan has set aside a portion of the land for putting up of the hostel facilities. Allow me to give the assurance of the university council that this expansion, however, shall not compromise the quality of the education being offered in this university. Our reputation in co-operative training, research and extension, and the products that we release to the job market compares to none and this we shall safeguard and protect at all times.
Our chief guest,
We as a council are committed to ensuring that we continue to engage competent and professional human resource to meet the ever-growing and changing learning environment we have. From the improvement of physical infrastructure, to use of ICT technologies, we are aiming at ensuring that we become a premier institution of research and learning so that we can also attract the best human resource in the industry. We continue to hire persons in the co-operative academia field with the intention of making CUK a premier centre of excellence on matters co-operatives. To this end, Chief guest, we are willing and looking forward to partnering with your ministry towards the realization of improving the linkage between academic research and the movement and recognize and appreciate the critical role your ministry continues to play in this ecosystem.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Let me conclude by congratulating the class of 2019 for their hard work and resilience that culminates today with the award of Certificates and Diplomas and the conferment of degrees. We send you out to the world to make a difference and to be the agents of the change we all so desire. Congratulations once more.
Thank you and God bless you all, God bless The Co-operative University and God Bless Kenya.