By NCV team
Entasopia Polytechnic has been brought down by mismanagement and fading interest from the community. This has led to the facility dwindling in operations and its serving as a constant eyesore to the community.
Established in the early 1970s, the village polytechnic was to offer training to those students who did not qualify to join secondary school or University. Among the technical courses to be taught were carpentry and Joinery, building technology, tailoring and dressmaking.
|Polytechnic dormitory with dilapidated roof|
(Photo: Joshua Kisemei | NCV)
Over the years, the institution grew to its peak between 1992 and 1993 when it had 30 trainees. The government through the late area MP Prof. George Saitoti provided additional training materials in the hope of increasing the capacity of the institution.
Mr. Soingei Ole Moilo, a former employee, remembers the hay days of the Polytechnic, “There were more than 100 goats, a functioning posho-mill and a poultry project owned by the institution”. He attributes the growth of the institution to a former manager Mrs. Anastacia.
“Her salary started disappearing under suspicious circumstances until one day she decided to leave,” he laments.
The current manager Charles Bosire has only seen 6 trainees finish their courses over his tenure of 14 years. Four students in tailoring and two in building and construction. “The polytechnic has a capacity of over 100 students but currently only one student is enrolled in building technology,” he says.
The manager complaints that failures of the committee, the government and lack of support from the community are the reasons the institution has failed. “The government stopped paying salaries to some of the instructors. How do we train without a source of livelihood?”He asks.
The institution has only one instructor, Mr. Samuel Yator training building technology, employed by the government
Mr. Yator also blames lack of support from government institutions. “The dormitory roof was destroyed by a branch that fell off a tree in 2005,” he says “we approached the Constituency Development Fund committee to seek funds for renovation and so far we have not received any feedback,” he adds.
A member of the institution’s committee who did not wish to be identified says that they approached the District Youth Office (DYO) in 2011 to seek funds for renovation. “We had planned to renovate the dormitories, repair furniture, fence the compound and purchase utensils for the kitchen,” he explained, “the DYO claimed that the ministry did not have any money for that purpose and instead advised us to seek help from CDF,” he says.The committee never met thereafter and for their two years in office they have only had three successful meetings.
Mr. Thomas Ronga, a community member, expressed the need to rehabilitate the institution to cope with the rising number of youths who are not qualifying to join secondary schools and Universities.
“There are large numbers of young people in our community who are lost in the centre playing pool table games and abusing drugs. An institution like this can divert their attention to more meaningful activities that will improve their future.” He recommends that the status of the institution be improved and instructors employed so that the youths can be able to start their courses early next year.
“A complete overhaul of the institution management is needed in order to reinstitute a more functional system” recommends Mr. Yator
Mr. Bosire recalls that many people have shown interest in the affairs of the institution but very little has been done. “Some people say the equipment is not there but we see our main problem as lack of trainees,” said the manager. He challenged the community to bring trainees before they raise questions concerning availability of training facilities.
Nguruman Community Voices (NCV) is asking well wishers to intervene to enable the polytechnic run its operations.