By Judith Gicobi
Following the requirements specified for the High Potential Individual (HPI) visa, Kenyan graduates are likely to miss out on possibilities to work in the United Kingdom (UK).
According to the revised guidelines, candidates for the HPI visa must have graduated from one of the world’s top 50 institutions, with no African university making the cut.
Harvard University (US), University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong), and University of Munich (Germany) are among the universities featured.
The HPI visa is an attractive visa because it allows candidates to work and live in the UK for two years. One of the advantages of the visa is that applicants can bring their partners with them.
“A High Potential Individual (HPI) visa gives you permission to stay in the UK for at least 2 years. To apply, you must have been awarded a qualification by an eligible university in the last 5 years.
“You cannot extend your HPI visa. However, you may be able to switch to a different visa,” read a statement by the UK government.
Some African governments have protested the revisions, while researchers have claimed that many Africans may miss out on life-changing chances as a result of the decision.
Poor governance and course variations, among other problems, have been criticized for Kenyan institutions’ poor performance in prior years in the rankings.
After bilateral negotiations between Nairobi and London, the UK has been a hub of employment for many Kenyans in past years. The Ministry of Labour stated in 2021 that it has reached an agreement with the United Kingdom to send 20,000 nurses to the UK.
“We are exporting Kenyan nurses. Last month we were in London with President Uhuru Kenyatta and had discussions with the UK government, which agreed to take 20,000 of their 62,000 shortage of nurses trained in Kenya,” Simon Chelugui, the Labour CS, noted at the time.