• Cynthia Meru | Communications Officer

Nairobi, 18 December 2023 – Noella Muziranenge, Nobert Odull, and Stephanie Wangeci Kingori from Technical University of Kenya emerged the overall winners of the debating competition featuring twenty-four students representing eight universities to mark the International Migrants Day.

Born to Rwandese parents who fled to Kenya at the height of the genocide, Noella considers herself a global citizen. “I was born in Kenya, unfortunately growing up most people associated my country with the genocide”, says Noella, “I never wanted to be linked to violence and chaos.

Nobert Odull travelled to Nairobi four years ago to study International Relations and Diplomacy. “When I moved from the village to the city, the city was a land of great opportunity,” noted Nobert “I have met friends from different backgrounds, I am more knowledgeable, tolerant and open minded on various issues.”  

Stephanie Wangeci King’ori is from Nyeri county but was born and raised in Uasin Gishu County and currently, she lives in Nairobi. A nurse by profession, Stephanie is currently a third-year student of International Relations and Diplomacy. “Nursing skills are life skills, my father died of a heart attack, if only someone knew how to perform Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), he may have been still alive,” she soberly remembers.

(Right to left) PS Roseline K. Njogu, State Department for Diaspora Affairs, Lecturer, Nobert Odull, Noella Muziranenge and Stephanie Wangeci Kingori from TUK and Dimanche Sharon, Chief of Mission, IOM Kenya. Photo: Moses Otunga/IOM

Hosted by the University of Nairobi, the debating competition had three motions: migration benefits all groups of society, migration is the most powerful driver of economic empowerment for youth in Kenya, and migration is the number one pathway for innovative and creative solutions to climate change.

The student representatives from the other universities, were law students and moot debates are part of their unit courses. We felt like the underdogs coming in,” said the winning team from Technical University of Kenya, “We dedicate our win to the university administration, who were able to postpone the exams we had on that day, the International Relations and Diplomacy team both current and alumni and our department lecturers whose guidance enabled us to prepare well in advance. Their support helped us to focus on the task at hand.” proudly said the winning team from Technical University of Kenya.

The three students were awarded a nine-month internship with IOM in Kenya.  

International Migrants Day (IMD) aims to advocate for migrants’ rights, and to encourage the international community to work together to harness the development potential of migration.

SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
SDG 4 - Quality Education
SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals