Popular for his Alaa and Kuna Kichwa hits, gengetone star Daniel Simiyu aka Dantez 254 scored a C+ in the recently released Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination results.
The Friends Bwake Boys student attained the grade against all odds, that coming at a time when he had already threatened to quit school.
Raised by a single mother and coming from a humble background, Dantez 254 hit the limelight after his song Kuna Kichwa topped the charts last year, making him a ‘celebrity’ both in his school and a quiet neighbourhood in Kitale, where the school is situated.
As students reported back to school in October last year ahead of the final exams, Dantez 254 told his mother that he wasn’t ready to resume classes, arguing that he would instead study from home for the remaining time of his high school life.
“We believe that Dantez 254 would have scored a better grade if he did not get derailed by bad company during the last days in school. He has however done well for himself and we are sure to get him a place in campus,” his music manager, Vusha Muhindi of Maliza Umaskini said.
As the new school term was beginning in October last year, Dantez 254 told his mother that he wasn’t going to resume school – at Friends Bwake Boys, Kitale - for his remaining two terms of high school as he had decided to ‘homeschool’.
The mother said she was shocked by the turn of events after her son revealed to her that together with other six students at school, they had decided to study from home ahead of their KCSE exams.
“This came as a shocker to me, especially for the fact that all our family bills including his school fees are being paid by his management that has been supporting his music with the condition that he should clear high school and score good grades. I have made it clear that he either goes back to school or simply starts to live on his own. To make matters worse, after I spoke to his management on the matter, they said they were suspending his contract for a year,” his mother told The Standard, then.
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“We will not be releasing his new projects for the next one year. We will also hold back his planned concerts. The truth is that we have been supporting Dantez 254 through his mother who is our contact point. Refusing to go back to school is a case of indiscipline and as management, we can’t condone that,” Vusha Muhindi had responded.
However, a week later, the young man apologised to the mother and management and resumed school noting that he had been influenced by other boys in the school to quit.
“I was expecting a better grade. I did the best I could to get back on track as my grades in previous exams had been better. I believe that education is key, even for a musician like me, and that is why I am asking anyone who has creative talent and who is still in school to remain humble to their parents and teachers and remain focused,” Dantez 254 told The Standard.