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Six pupils from Embu County get rare chance to tour Japan

By Joseph Muchiri | February 8th 2015
The six pupils from Tenri Primary School in Embu county who were selected by Japan’s Fuji TV for a tour of Japan in March. They are with: From back left their headteacher James Kariuki, their classteacher John Muriithi and a teacher Caroline Jimbo. BY JOSEPH MUCHIRI/STANDARD

Their dream of touring Japan has come to pass.

The six Tenri Primary School pupils from Embu County will be sponsored by Fuji TV, a leading station in Japan, to tour exciting places from March 2 to March 11.

Brian Njeru (12), Andrew Omariba (eleven), Collins Macharia (ten), Abdinur Chukulis (eleven), Leslie Mwende (eleven), and Zawadi Mutinda (eleven) were chosen last October, after Fuji TV visited their school to shoot a film documentary, which received rave reviews in Japan and paved the way for the tour.

The pupils also got a chance to interact with Japan’s top comedian, Eikou Kano, who entertained them with inspiring stories.

They were told to write a composition and describe their passions and state why they would like to visit the Far Eastern country.

During a school assembly this term, James Kariuki, the head teacher, called out the six pupils’ names  and announced that their trip to tour Japan had been sponsored.

“Fuji TV will sponsor their trip to a tune of Sh400,000 each for air tickets and accommodation. We have already commenced the process to apply for their passports and visas,” said Kariuki.

Kariuki, together with Caroline Jimbo, another teacher who had previously taught in Japan for five years, will accompany the pupils on their trip.

The head teacher says the trip offers a great learning opportunity for the pupils, who will get to learn about the Japanese way of life.

He said the pupils had written outstanding essays that exhibited creativity and imagination.

While the other five pupils will be leaving the country for the first time, Omariba was in Australia during the December holidays to visit his mother.

While in Japan, he looks forward to eating sushi - a popular Japanese food made from raw fish - and visiting Japanese halls and hotels.

He will also carry a camera and take photos of oceans, mountains, water towers, parks and museums among other fascinating features.

Njeru is excited about boarding an airplane for the first time in his life.

He is interested in seeing Japan’s foods, traditional clothes and places of worship.

Mwende, on the other hand, said she had never dreamt she would fly out of the country and it did not even occur to her that courtesy of her well written composition, she would be among the successful candidates.

She looks forward to seeing museums, putting on kimonos and touring geographical features.

Mutinda is hopeful that the tour will offer an opportunity to interact with the Japanese people, attend festivals and learn the local language.

She said she would take a friendship vase to Kano as a gift since he had been friendly during his visit.

Chukulis looks forward to fishing in the oceans and visiting musicians, wearing kimonos and eating Japanese foods such as tempura, donburi and takoyaki.

Macharia says the opportunity came as a big surprise and he wants to visit Japan to learn its culture, see its scenery and make friends.

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