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Schoolgirls attack colleague for ‘going against Islam’

By ALI ABDI | Published Tue, June 10th 2014 at 00:00, Updated June 9th 2014 at 22:36 GMT +3
Asha was accused of mixing journalism with modelling and music, activities her attackers claimed were contrary to the teachings of Islam
 Asha was accused of mixing journalism with modelling and music, activities her attackers claimed were contrary to the teachings of Islam  PHOTO/STANDARD

Isiolo, Kenya: Asha* (not her real name) would now be dead had a watchman not acted fast and rescued her from her schoolmates who had attacked her, accusing her of participating in activities that were forbidden by the Islamic faith.

The 17-year-old Form Three student sustained serious wounds on her back, shoulder, chest, head and hands and suffered a broken finger after the group of about 15 girls armed with crude weapons descended on her within the school compound on Saturday night at about 8pm.

Earlier in the day, 49 students from the school’s Journalism Club had visited the neighbouring Isiolo Boys Secondary School where beside’s the day’s business, modelling and music were also showcased.

‘‘It was a whole day trip for members of the club and all went on well and we came back to school at around 7pm,’’ said Asha, the club’s chairlady and also a prefect.

Asha spoke to The Standard yesterday at Isiolo Police Station, where accompanied by her relatives led by her mother, she recorded a statement.

As they had supper, a student informed her that there was a sick student in the dormitory who required urgent assistance. Being a prefect, Asha hurriedly left her meal to go and render her assistance. Unbeknown to her, she was going to be beaten up.

‘‘Between the dining hall and the dormitory, a group of about 15 students attacked me. They were armed with clubs, sticks and stones,’’ she said.

She was accused of mixing journalism with modelling and music, activities her attackers claimed were contrary to the teachings of Islam.

‘‘They said they will go to paradise if they kill me and they went on beating me senselessly. No one came to my rescue as more students gathered around me,’’ said Asha.

It took the intervention of the watchman who scared away the irate students and rescued the girl from the jaws of death.

Three teachers took Asha, who was bleeding profusely, to Waso Nursing Home where she was treated and discharged after three hours.

She spent the night at home that night.

On Sunday, she went to Isiolo Level Four Hospital where she was again  treated and discharged.

‘‘Apart from visible deep wounds, Asha now nurses a broken finger and it will take some time for her to recover fully,’’ her mother said.

A teacher in the school who requested anonymity said Asha would have been killed had the watchman not intervened.

‘‘We thank God that she is alive... She was lucky the watchman came to the scene to rescue her,’’ he said.

Asha, who is yet to recover from shock, is categorical that she will never go back to that school.

‘‘I will never go back to the school where my colleagues wanted to kill me for no apparent reason,’’ she said.

P3 form

‘‘I am diabetic and when I received the news that my daughter was nearly killed by her fellow students, my condition worsened and was taken to hospital,’’ said her mother.

Isiolo OCPD Daniel Kamanza was out office but a source revealed that Asha will be given a P3 form by Thursday and her attackers will be arrested.

When a team of journalists visited the school, the Deputy Principal, a Ms Fatuma, dismissed them saying: ‘‘We do not need the media here’’. She admonished the watchmen for allowing the journalists into the compound.

The Principal Florence Achacha, when contacted, promised to call back saying she had just arrived in the school. She did not respond to our subsequent calls and a short text message.

A source at the school indicated that some girls were suspended and sent home, even before the victim had identified them

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