Candidates moved to safe centres

Several Kenya Certificate of Primary Education exam (KCPE) centres in Coast have been merged to enable hundreds of candidates sit their papers.

The Government has merged the centres due to floods that have rendered many roads impassable and some schools inaccessible.

It is also believed that merging isolated centres will enhance security and heighten surveillance against cheating. It will also enable candidates from impoverished schools access meals.

In Mombasa, candidates from two private schools in Jomvu have been transferred to Mikindani Primary School.

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Education officials named the institutions that have have their pupils relocated as Bridge Academy Allidina and Victory Academy Bangladesh.

Cosmas Mutia, the head teacher of Mikindani Primary School, said they are hosting 28 candidates at their school after the other two institutions became inaccessible due to heavy rains.

Mr Mutia said his school has registered 117 candidates and is more than ready for the examination.

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"We have prepared our candidates well and hope that we will excel and post good results just like in the past years," Mutia said.

In Kwale, County Commissioner Karuku Ngumo said they have merged 20 schools in Kinango and Kasemeni wards to avoid flooding, which could disrupt the administration of the exams.

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Mr Ngumo said at least 300 candidates had been moved to new centres and provided with relief food until they sit all their papers.

“We had to merge exams centres in areas with overflowing rivers and streams. I am currently in the field monitoring the rehearsals,” Ngumo said.

Kinango and Kasemeni are some of the areas with low enrolment rates in Kwale County.

Near school

In Kilifi, 10 candidates from Jimba Primary School in Rabai, will spend the night in other villagers' homes near the school so as to avoid the risk of being late for the exams, or failing to make it completely, due to flooding.

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Worried parents, who spoke to The Standard along the banks of River Jimba, blamed the Government for ignoring residents' plea to construct a bridge connecting Boyani to Jimba.

"Each time it rains, communication is completely cut off. This has been the case for over five decades," David Kinda said.

In Taita Taveta, Director of Education Samuel Wanjohi said they had merged some exam centres due to low enrolment caused by low birth rates.
 
Mr Wanjohi said some of the schools have less than 10  candidates against the recommended number of 15.

In Taita Hills, six candidates from Mlechi Primary School have been moved to Maynard Primary School, while 12 candidates from Funju have been moved to Mgambonyi Secondary School.

Further, nine candidates from Mole Primary School have been moved to Kirindinyi Primary School, while six candidates from Mwambolembole have been relocated to Mwakiki Primary School.

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In Tana River, candidates from 10 schools may be locked out of the exam due to flooding if proper arrangement is not made to relocate them.

Candidates from the schools mainly in Inyali, Kalalani and Woldena, where border conflicts erupted last week, may find it hard to sit the exam because of evictions by police.

Governor Dhadho Godhana on Friday told residents to remain calm as nobody will move them out of their homesteads.

Tana River sub-county education director Abdinassir Nur said the Government would ensure the candidates who were displaced after their homes were demolished sit for the exam.

"We have already set a plan to bring the candidates to one place and I'm sure they will sit the exam today without any hitch."

[Patrick Beja, Renson Mnyamwezi, Philip Mwakio and Hassan Barisa]

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