Pressure is mounting on President William Ruto to issue a directive on the release of Kenya Certificates of Secondary Education (KCSE) withheld by school principals.
Speaking to the media on Sunday, January 15, Manyatta MP John Gitonga begged Mukunji Ruto to give the order.
He stated that it was wrong for the principals to keep the documents as they endangered the students’ lives.
“I want to appeal nationwide to President Ruto to issue a directive that all public high school diplomas be released to students so they can join TVETs, colleges and universities to continue their lives,” he pleaded .
Manyatta MP John Gitonga Mukunji at a thanksgiving service at ACK St. Philips Church Kithunguriri, Ruguru Ngandori Ward on Sunday, January 15, 2023
John Gitonga Mukunji
In a country where unemployment is so high and a tough economy makes top students live miserable lives, Mukunji noted that the situation was exacerbated by the school principals not releasing the certificates.
“You cannot flourish without these certificates. The moment you keep them behind you means you have brought their life to a standstill. You can’t even get a job without them,’ he remarked.
He further added that the school fees balances used as an excuse to withhold the certificates did not affect the institutions as they are always funded by the government.
Mukunji issued an order in his constituency for all heads of public schools to immediately issue certificates to affected former students.
The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) legislator who set up a company with a loan of Ksh25,000 HELB explained how he had grown tired of complaints from students who suffered after completing school.
In the absence of certificates, the students could be forced to forge papers, a trend that had been observed among politicians in the past.
“If someone has completed their form four even with the balance of school fees, then give the certificates to the students to continue their studies. No school has been in debt since the government funded these schools,” he noted.
On November 9, 2022, the Ministry of Education issued a directive to principals of primary and secondary schools to release the certificates of students under their care.
In a statement from the then Chief Secretary of Elementary Education, Dr. Julis Jwan, schools were warned not to charge before the documents were released.
County officials were also instructed to ensure compliance with the directive.
“The Ministry of Education has sent numerous reminders and circulars to schools through the field officers warning them against the introduction of additional charges, the withholding of KCPE/KCSE certificates and illegal teaching during weekends and school holidays,” said Dr. .Jwan.
Students take a Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination (KCSE) exam