Kenya’s prestigious Utali College and Hotel closes its doors

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The government has closed down Kenya Utalii College and its satellite campuses in Kisumu and Mombasa.

Officials said the college and its hotel could not raise money for operations.

In a memo on Monday from Tourism and Wildlife Principal Secretary Safina Kwekwe seen by the Nation, Utalii College and hotel chief executive Hashim Mohammed is directed to shut down operations and ensure residents vacate.

“The college has been closed until such a time that its board, management and the ministry develop a sustainable and profitable operational plan,” the PS said.

The memo added that the ministry and the top governing body of the college held a meeting recently on how to transform the institution during which it was noted that it could no longer generate revenue.

“Operating the satellite campuses is expensive yet the college does not have enough students,” the memo added.

The college had received September 2020 intake requests. It was ordered to complete its programmes online.

In 2017, Tourism and Wildlife Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala asked the government to help clear a Sh3 billion loan taken by the hotel.

Some Sh140 billion given by the government as a loan for renovations in 1996 has accrued to Sh2.5 billion.

Last month, the hotel was made one of the designated Covid-19 isolation centres.

It is not clear whether those told to leave are in isolation.

Tourism has been hit hard by the pandemic that has seen hotel workers countrywide suspended or made to take indefinite unpaid leave.

Source: MARY WAMBUI- Daily Nation

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