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Prezzo orders schools to reopen on Monday but Machogu's late-night memo on the way

Peter Kimani
 EdUucation CS Ezekiel Machogu. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

Schools will reopen on Monday, as directed by Prezzo Bill Ruto this week, but many schools are still marooned, pit latrines are overflowing, grass is overgrown and many buildings are teetering on the brink of collapse after being waterlogged for weeks. In other areas, bridges have been swept away, so students have no way of getting to school.

Consequently, Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu declared some “two per cent” of schools might not reopen on Monday, and listed three counties that have been worst affected by the floods: Kisumu, Tana River and Homa Bay.

I don’t know if this “two per cent” accounts for schools in those three counties or nationally. This means we don’t know if those affected are a handful schools or if they run into dozens. Predictably, Machogu’s next communication will probably arrive on Sunday night or early Monday morning, so the prospects of schoolchildren being turned back midway are quite high.

The other sticking point in Machogu’s proclamation is that modalities will be put in place to ensure learning is not interrupted for students in the affected schools. He said one of the ways of mitigating that is moving the students to other areas.

It’s a phraseology we’re now accustomed to; we heard it in Mathare, Kwa Rueben and other informal settlements where citizens were urged to “move to higher grounds.” Do such kind of spaces exist? And are they owned by the government?

And what kind of facilities, if at all, would be able to provide accommodation and sanitation for so many? I am sure Machogu & Co are busy working on these logistics and we should wait for his communication late Sunday/early Monday morning, affirming what we suspect we know already….

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