Nyanza Regional Police Commander Leonard Katana
At least 4,210 students in Nyanza are out of school following rising unrest in secondary schools. A report by security agencies paints a grim picture on the state of learning, with just three months to the national examinations.
Regional Police Commander Leonard Katana yesterday confirmed that 26 schools were closed between July 1 and 11, adding that 47 students had been arrested.
“We are yet to take all of them to court because some are still being interrogated. But we can confirm that we are working to have all criminal cases punished.” But barely 12 hours after the police boss released his report, three more schools were reported to have been torched. Katana said police foiled a plan by students to torch a dormitory within Seme in Kisumu and confiscated two litres of petrol, adding that they had intensified patrols in the area and were following promising leads on the individuals behind the incidents. On Monday, Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed and Kenya National Examination Council Chairman George Magoha visited the region on a fact-finding mission. Prof Magoha warned students that the commission would not postpone the exams, with Mohamed, saying the Government would treat the incidents as purely criminal cases. And yesterday, Katana called on stakeholders in the education sector to join hands to help curb the contagion effect where students were mimicking their striking colleagues. “These students are in a critical stage of development and if not well taken care of, they may slip into such unlawful actions,” he said.