Kenya: Kibra Pupil Earns a Place at Karen C School as CS Magoha Pays Surprise Visit

20 January 2020

Nairobi — Josephine Nyandiwa, a student who wrote 2019 her Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KPCE) at Nairobi's Old Kibera Primary School, will now have an opportunity to further her studies following an intervention by Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha.

Nyandiwa who scored 266 marks in her exam could not hide her joy when Prof Magoha visited her humble homestead as he conducted door-to-door visits to ensure 100 per cent transition to secondary schools for all candidates who sat last year's KCPE.

Her dream to continue with education was reignited after Prof Magoha announced that her fees and upkeep at the Karen C School will be catered for by the government.

Nyandiwa, 16 had been selected to join Emoyo Secondary School in Nyamira County, but she couldn't join even the nearest day school due to inadequate funds to cater for her school fees.

"I had completely lost hope, but I can only thank God for this opportunity. I will work hard to achieve my dream of being a lawyer," she said.

Her uncle, Abednego Sankolo, in whose care she lived described the visit by the CS as elating.

"I want to thank God for using CS Magoha to have our child enroll to a boarding school. I don't have words but am thankful," a delighted Sankolo said.

Magoha was making random calls after going through a list of students who had not picked their letters from the schools they had been selected, when he informed Sankolo that he was on his way to the house.

The CS was concerned that out of 300 students who completed KCPE at Old Kibera Primary School, only 46 had picked their calling letters to respective secondary schools in which they had been placed.

"Why are you keeping a student at home? Am coming," said Magoha on phone.

Magoha and his entourage parked their cars midway as the road leading to Sankolo's house is impassible.

A teacher familiar with the place led Magoha and his team to the house after walking for about 10 minutes.

"Where is the girl? Tell her to prepare we are taking her to school," Magoha said after greeting the girl's uncle inside his single room.

The girl hurriedly put on a dress, and armed with only her results slip, boarded one of the cars that had accompanied the CS accompanied by her uncle.

After about 20 minutes' drive, they arrived at Karen C Girls Secondary School and she was enrolled.

Nyandiwa was also kitted with uniform and a pair of shoes ready to commence her studies.

The sub-county director of education was directed to ensure that the girl have all what is required to keep her in school.

Magoha, speaking after overseeing her enrollment, called upon all government agencies on the ground to ensure that students who completed primary education are placed in secondary schools.

"I want to urge sub-chiefs and chiefs to work with education officers on the ground to move around to trace students who are yet to join secondary schools so that we make sure they enroll. I will still move around, but everybody must get involved," said Magoha.

Magoha's campaign comes even as cases of children seeking help from well-wishers to join secondary schools have increased, with most parents citing poverty.

Last week, Magoha told secondary school heads not to send students home for lack of fees.

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