Joy as university offers mother Sh3.5m scholarship, new home


MKU Chairman Prof Simon Gicharu hands over a scholarship cheque to Milly Nafula, 33, to pursue a degree in Medicine and Surgery at the Equip Africa College of Medical and Health Sciences in Kitale. [Obande Osire, Standard]

A 33-year-old woman who posted a grade ‘A-’ (minus) in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination 14 years ago but failed to join university has reason to smile after her dream to pursue further education finally became a reality.

After The Standard highlighted Milly Nafula’s plight last year the Mount Kenya University (MKU) came forward and offered her a scholarship worth Sh3.5 million to pursue a degree in Medicine and Surgery at the university.

Nafula was lost for words when MKU Chairman Simon Gicharu handed her a cheque and admission letter to the Equip Africa College of Medical and Health Sciences in Kitale.

“This is a great moment in my life. I don’t know how to express myself, but thanks to Gicharu and the entire family of MKU for this rare and wonderful support,” Nafula said while receiving the admission to the institution.

Gicharu also handed Nafula a title deed and a house on a quarter acre piece of land at Ututu village that the university purchased to resettle her family. Nafula narrated how her mother struggled to bring up a family of four children.

“I come from a poor background. My mother carried a huge burden. She made and sold local brew to put food on the table and support my education. It was the worst business but my mother had no option,” Nafula narrated.

Despite posting impressive 379 marks in the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) examination in 2002, Nafula was not admitted to a secondary school.

Milly sat for KCSE 14 years ago but failed to join university [Courtesy]

“When the results were released, I asked my headteacher where my Form One admission letter was. He said he had not received any for me,” said Nafula.

She said her mother organised for her to join Manor House High School, a private institution in Kitale, but she dropped out after two years for lack of school fees.

“One day, my mother came up with a proposal to sell a piece of land that she had acquired to facilitate my education. I supported the idea and I was back to school,” she said.

And in 2007, when KCSE results were released, Nafula was among candidates who had excelled after managing a score of ‘A-’ of 74 points. However, her dream of joining University was shattered after she failed to get an admission letter.

Nafula’s former school could not explain why she had missed out in the university admissions. Her mother later died, leaving Nafula in charge of her siblings. This forced her to engage in menial labour to fend for the family.

A desperate Nafula later approached a local cleric, Herman Kazili to secure for her a better job, it is when the cleric realised Nafula’s academic potentials and alerted the Standard Group to highlight her story. On Friday, it become a turning point for Nafula when Gicharu presented her the full scholarship and a home.

She described the turn of events as a special journey in her life and promised to work hard and actualise her dream of becoming a medical doctor and to reciprocate by assisting the community after studies.

“This is a special journey for me. I’m going to work hard to success in my studies. I promise I will give back to the society,” she pledged.

Gicharu also gifted Nafula a Sh190,000 donation by alumni of Kenyatta University, including Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i to support the family. He was accompanied by Prof Evans Kerosi and the area Kuppet chairman Eliud Wafula.