Schools fail to reopen after Mau evictions

By Julius Chepkwony | Tuesday, Aug 28th 2018 at 00:00
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Students head back to school in Nakuru yesterday. Some schools in Mau may not reopen for third term. [Kennedy Gachuhi, Standard]

An estimated 4,000 pupils have no schools to report to in Mau, Narok South.

Fifteen schools in the area were closed following the eviction of families accused of encroaching on the forest in Maasai Mau two months ago.

The schools include Kirobon, Chebirpelek, Kiletien, Kitopen, Simboyon, Enosagami and Chebitet.

Others are Koitabai, Sebetet, Olapa, Osongoroi, Cheptuec and Ndianit.

Richard Cheruiyot, a committee member at Olapa Primary School, said he was not sure whether schools in the area would reopen as the families that fled their homes were yet to return.

Olapa Primary has 340 pupils in Early Childhood Development Educationall the way to Standard Seven. According to Cheruiyot, a meeting had been called to discuss a way forward.

“We had asked pupils to come to school but none have turned up today. Fears of another eviction are causing most parents to keep their children at home,” he said.

Simeon Businei, a parent at the school, said the Government should allow the reopening of schools so that pupils were not denied their right to education.

Mr Busienei said his five children were still at home awaiting further directions from the Government.

“We are confused; as of now we don’t know what to do. The Government should address this issue. We need to know what is next for our children."

Joel Cheborge, a committee member at Kirobon Primary School, said even if learning resumed, the pupils would have no one to attend to them as the whereabouts of most teachers remain unknown.

Richard Koech, a teacher at Kitoben Primary School, which has 650 pupils, said only 20 turned up yesterday. 

However, Narok County Commissioner George Natembeya said there were no registered schools in the area and that no orders had been given to close down learning institutions.

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