Top student wants to join Maseno, pursue medicine like his brother

Jeriel Ndeda of Mang’u High School scored an A with a mean score of 87.167 points. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

The news that Jeriel Ndeda Obura had topped the 2021 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination awakened the sleepy village of Vumale in Vihiga County.

A mood of celebration engulfed the area after news came in that their village produced the best candidate nationally.

Ndeda of Mang’u High School emerged the top candidate in the examination results announced yesterday by Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha.

Ndeda scored an A with a mean score of 87.167 points. He was followed by Mukuha Timothy Kamau of Alliance High School with a mean score of 87.139, and Job Ngara of Mang’u High School with a mean score of 87.116.

The Standard on Sunday caught up with the top performer at home in Vihiga a few minutes after the CS released the results. The jovial Ndeda said he expected to perform well but it was in his wildest dreams that he would top the nation.

“My parents had actually told me that I would be among the top in the nation; personally I knew I would get an A of 84 points but I didn’t believe mine would be the first name to be read as the top student,” said Ndenda.

On the chilly Saturday afternoon, Ndeda and his two brothers sat pensively, listening to the CS as he asked the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) official at Mitihani House to hand him the list of top students that apparently had not been attached to his speech.

After the list was brought up to CS Magoha, Ndeda’s name was the first to be called out.

“I was left in tears and it took time for me to come to my senses that indeed I was the one who topped,” said Ndenda.

His family members and neighbours carried him shoulder high in jubilation.

“I was overwhelmed and just sat silently on the couch for a few minutes to absorb the news,” said the top candidate.

“Then I felt my brother patting me on the back congratulating me and then the phone calls started coming in,” he added.

Jeriel Ndeda wants to join Maseno University to pursue his dream course in medicine. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

Ndeda sat his KCPE examinations at Mbale Shalom School and scored 428 marks, before proceeding to Mang’u High school, where he has maintained the top-ten position since Form One.

He attributed his exemplary results to discipline, hard work, and trust in God.

“When I joined Form One I was a bit scared, I was poor in the languages but as I spent my time at Mang’u, I learned to work on my weaknesses and become a top student throughout,” he said.

The top student says he wants to become a medical doctor, a career path he intends to follow after his elder brother.

“I want to continue with the family legacy that has seen my brother study medicine, it’s a joy for my parents who have always supported me,” said Ndenda.

“I love working with living things and Biology,” he added, noting that he now wants to join Maseno University to pursue his dream course. 

Ndeda, who is the third born in a family of five siblings, believes it is the strong foundation built by his parents, both who are teachers, that enabled him to succeed.

“My parents are teachers and they always tell us to work hard and smart,” said Ndeda.

His brother Wyne Obura congratulated him, terming his performance as one of the biggest news their family has heard in a long time.

“We are happy as a family. I just called my dad and mum, both who are very happy and proud of our brother; Jeriel has made us proud,” said Obura.