The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Gatundu Orphan to Sit Out of KCPE

A standard eight pupil from Gatundu South will not sit his KCPE exams because he was not registered.

Simon Kagecha an orphan and a pupil at Ikuma Primary School learnt of his fate on Friday morning. His grandparents who he lives with had paid examinations fees in March.

His grand father Chomba Karanja 70 blamed the school's headteacher Joseph Ngugi for being "negligent" and "toying" with their grandchild's education.

Karanja said Kagecha has not been performing well in school and maybe that is why Ngugi did not register him "for fear of lowering the school's marks nationally." He said the headteacher did not give him any reason why Kagecha was not registered.

Speaking to the Star at their Githioro home, Kagecha's Grandparents i for messing up with the life of their grandchild whose mother Salome Wanjiru died in 2008.

According to the peasant couple Karanja is a poor performer and the reason why he might not have been registered is the fear of lowering the school's mean score.

Mzee Chomba told the Star reporter that as late as Thursday last week, the head teacher called a meeting of all guardians of candidates to the school where they were asked to clear any outstanding levies and pay a further Ksh. 250.00 for the candidate's lunch which he did.

"But the following morning, the head teacher sent for my wife and told her that Kagecha was not registered without giving any reasonable explanation since we had paid the exam fee in time" Chomba said.

Efforts to get assistance from the District Education office bore no fruits as the officer in charge of examination said it was to late to do anything about the matter.

When contacted, the head teacher passed the blame to Kagecha's grandparents insisting that they paid the exam fees late and there was nothing he could have done. He said he even tried to register the boy in the adult class at the Gatundu Adult Education office without success since he was time bared and there was no extension this year unlike past years. But when pressed as to why he had to inform the guardians on the candidates fate too late, Ngugi failed to give any reasonable explanation.

When the Star called the Gatundu District Education Office about a reprieve which appeared in the press on Monday and was attributed to Education Minister Mutula Kilonzo,, an officer whose identity cannot be revealed since he is not supposed to speak to the press said no

circular to that effect has been received and there is no way they can

act on press releases. Kagecha who despite his poor performance is a good footballer and also a long distance runner told the Star that he wanted to finish his primary education and join a Youth Polytechnic to learn driving but without a KCPE certificate, his future is now at bleak.

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