10 August 2018

Kenya: Puzzle of Woman Using Free Tablet Meant for Class One Pupils

A woman who was attending the Murang'a University graduation ceremony was pictured using one of the free tablets that were issued to Class One pupils.

The woman was shown live on Citizen TV either recording or taking a picture with the Taifa Elimu tablet.

The tablets were launched under the digital literacy programme by the Jubilee government.

Jubilee had promised to give each Class One student a laptop if they won the 2013 General Election.

Later, the government decided to go for tablets as opposed to laptops.

But the project has been dogged by controversies.

THREE YEARS IN JAIL

In 2017, two men were sentenced to three years in jail for stealing the digital tablets and laptops valued at Sh3.5 million from Mwena Primary School in Lunga Lunga.

There have been similar cases of the tablets being stolen reported across the country.

In other cases, some schools have been forced to abandon the digital learning programme due to lack of power and storage facilities for the tablets.

There have also been cases where the teachers are unable to teach their students because they too have no idea how they work.

PRIVATE PRIMARY SCHOOLS

In October 2017, then Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i announced the expansion of the programme to include private primary schools.

The tablets are currently being assembled under the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology ICT project.

So far, at least 329,000 tablets have been delivered to 7,238 primary schools in 21 of the 47 counties under the JKUAT ICT project. There are more than 29,000 public primary schools in the country.

The supply of free tablets to primary schools has suffered a setback after the government reallocated Sh1.5 billion meant for the programme this year.

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