First-year students admitted to universities this year will receive their student loans in mid-October, the Higher Educations Loans Board (Helb) has announced.
Helb Chief Executive Officer Charles Ringera said the agency had already disbursed loans to 10,000 students.
The rest of the students, Ringera said, will receive their first disbursement by mid-October.
“The first time applicants will have received their allocation by October that will help them in paying for their first semester,” Ringera told The Star.
The HELB boss noted that the state agency had received 85,000 applications so far.
“Each day we receive an average of 200 applications and we expect the number to be higher than that by the end of the application window,” Ringera said.
Ringera, however, stated that despite the high number of applicants HELB can only support about 75,000 students at the moment due to budget constraints.
The HELB budget, Ringera said, currently stands at Sh3.2 billion.
“Our budget allocation was cut by Sh1 billion this year, from Sh16.8 billion in the previous year to Sh15.8 billion and this has affected the provision of loans,” Ringera said.
This year, a total of 128,073 of the 142,540 candidates who qualified to join university were placed to pursue degree programmes.
This means that nearly half of the students will miss on loans to help them pay school fees and cater for basic needs such as food.