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This week’s KCPE examinations must not be disrupted by protests

By The Standard | October 29th 2017

Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) candidates in some regions will be writing their tests under difficult circumstances owing to political unrest. For this reason, everything must be done to ensure they are not distracted when the examinations begin tomorrow.

Already, violence associated with last Thursday’s repeat president elections has disrupted the revision programme of some candidates, especially those in boarding schools that were damaged by demonstrators out to stop IEBC officials from accessing their institutions. In a concerted bid to stop the voting exercise in some schools which were doubling as Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) polling stations, some buildings were damaged and laboratories destroyed. This was unfortunate because ultimately, those who will suffer most are innocent students or dependants of the protestors who were damaging school property. We must insist that leaders from areas where demonstrators disrupted the peace impress upon their supporters to stand down and allow the exams to go on uninterrupted. It would be tragic if the future of some students is destroyed by those agitating for reforms in the IEBC.

Examinations in Kenya shape the direction in which the life of young people will take and students who will be handicapped in some way by the action or protestors could be staring at a bleak future. Therefore the police must provide adequate security for those who will be at examination centres and ensure that sealed examination material is not tampered with. Parents and guardians who feel their wards are under threat must make sure that candidates find their way to the designated examination centres. It would be unfortunate if hooligans take advantage of the fluid situation and unrest in some regions to try and illegally obtain examination material. We expect education authorities and the police to be on high alert to guard against cheating. Even so, we ask KCPE candidates to remain focused and wish them every success in this year’s KCPE.

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