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Society’s plans to put up accommodation for university/college students in top gear.

A file picture of a hostel in a Nairobi university.
A housing cooperative society has announced plans to put up hostels in order to curb the shortage in accommodation among the increasing number of students joining Murang'a University students.

According to the Chairman of Broad Borders Housing and Land Cooperative Society Ltd. Mr. Jeremey Keremeri, the organisation was currently engaging its members to finance the construction of hostels. The actualisation of this dream will bring to an end years of suffering among students who face a hard time finding accommodation near the campus or are forced to pay high rent.

Currently, the number of students admitted into the university is not determined by the bed spaces available, a factor that has resulted to a high demand for accommodation. The situation has been aggravated by the mushrooming middle-level colleges which have disadvantaged students from poor backgrounds who cannot afford accommodation outside the university. This has seen a number of students being forced to seek alternative accommodation in shanties thereby jeopardising both their security and education. 

“We intend to provide these students with an appropriate environment for living as well as studying and also opportunities for informal academic and social interchange. These student need privacy and quiet place where they are living in close proximity and are sharing facilities,” said Keremeri.

Keremeri added that each unit will cost Sh. 650,000 to build but a member must contribute Sh. 200,000 to own it.

“Our members will be required to contribute the Sh. 650, 000 in nine months for a 20 square meters’ section. When complete, the students will pay between Sh. 4,000 and Sh. 5,000 per unit depending on the size,” he said.

Off-the-campus accommodation currently costs about Sh. 7,000 per month, more than twice what the university charges.

He pointed out that this new investment will involve building flats and apartments to also allow its members to own single housing units.

According to the director, the mass construction will be cheaper compared to individual construction of single units.

“It is rather very expensive when people build such houses individually due to the logistics involved. A unit such as this one might exceed Sh. 1,000,000.”

The chairman acknowledged that the lack of accommodation within the university was the reason why landlords in Murang’a town exploited students with their exorbitant rents that did not match the rooms students paid for and could also be among reasons why insecurity was an issue in the region.

“Most of the rooms available for the students are very small and at times students are forced to stay more than the required number in order to foot the bill or for security reasons which at the end hampers their studies,” he noted.

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