When the facelift of the JKUAT Students Centre is complete, it shall go down in history books as one of the most significant milestones accomplished by any Students’ government in the University. I’m saying ‘when’, because I believe it’s now just a matter of time and not a question of ‘if’. I have been unfortunate enough to see and hear some people spew skepticism as to whether the ambitious renovation plan will sail through to the finish line. This can be easily pardoned, for we live in a country whose citizenry have for so long known no any other darling but pessimism and resignation to whatever the winds of fate blow their way. But I’m equally cognizant of the old-age wisdom that you should never let small minds convince you that your dreams are too big to come true.
On the 19th date of February, 2018, the Jomo Kenyatta University Students Association (JKUSA) commissioned a facelift of the Students Centre at the University Main Campus. In the groundbreaking ceremony officially presided over by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Mabel Imbuga accompanied by other senior members of the University management, the ambitious plan of revamping the Students Centre was set in motion. Speaking at the event held at the Center, the Vice Chancellor lauded the JKUSA officials for spearheading the initiative, and implored on the contractor to stick to the contract timelines and deliver quality.
“This is the first project of such a magnitude to be done by students, for the students and it’s a move in the right direction. Also worth noting is the fact that the contractor working on this is a former student of ours, Mr. Dennis Mumo, who studied Construction Management” she opined.
The refurbishment of the Students Centre is set to cost Kshs. 5.7 million, and will entail its reconstruction into an ultra-modern state of the art facility. Some notable features of the new Centre include new offices for religious groups within the University, a state of the art fully equipped gym, a lounge, increased interior and exterior sitting spaces, gaming areas, TV rooms, among others. The visionary initiative is a brainchild of the students’ government, and the funding comes from the resources allocated to the running of the Students’ Association.
Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony, the JKUSA Finance Secretary Mr. Ibrahim Boru asserted that the current sorry state of the Centre leaves nothing to write home about, considering the significant role the student centre plays, not just to students but also to staff and parents when they visit the University.
“This is why we’re determined to see this facelift to its completion, and this project is not for JKUSA, it’s for all comrades. I can guarantee to all skeptics that it will go through, and we are ready to be judged based on that,” he added.
The project will be done in two phases, with the first phase expected to be complete in 16 weeks.This will entail refurbishment of the Kitchen, Eating Area, and the Lounge. Students have been advised to keep off the facility once construction begins. The Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Finance, Prof. Benard Moirongo, himself a professional architect, assured students and management of his commitment to working closely with the contractors and seeing to the success of the project.
Well then, let the work begin!