, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 18 – The Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) has introduced a tracking system to monitor movement of examination papers during this year’s Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education Examinations that kick off on Thursday.
KNEC Chief Executive Officer Paul Wasanga said on Monday that all personnel who handle the papers will be required to register their names, signature and the time they deal with the papers.
The papers will be tracked from the KNEC headquarters to the schools and back to Nairobi for marking.
“The other security measure that we have put in place is tracking of the green bags. We have put a very specific number on the green bags so that if it is tampered with we can know who has tampered with it and where,” he said.
“The bags that are containing the question papers are serialised and they have bar codes which we are able to check if it goes to the wrong place,” he added.
He was speaking at a press conference in Nairobi where he assured that this year’s process would receive maximum security to avert incidences of cheating.
“The credibility of an examination depends on the people who are handling it as well as the candidates themselves and the best security measure is really the integrity (which) is what we have been preaching,” he said.
He explained that school heads will be required to be present to witness the opening of examination packets together with candidates, security officers and supervisors. The same people will witness the resealing of all packets.
Education Permanent Secretary James Ole Kiyiapi on the other hand urged candidates to desist from engaging in any form of cheating during this year’s national examinations.
He pointed out that extra precautions have been put in place to curb such incidences and that stern action will be taken on those who cheat.
“Sometimes bright students can undermine their efforts by doing really silly things and sometimes this is because of a perception that others are doing it,” he said. “Nobody is allowed to cheat in an exam. It is stealing and it is like saying that I am going to steal because others are stealing.”
“Where irregularities occur, the examination council has no choice but to ensure that they take necessary action and this range from criminal charges proffered against those who were implicated to cancellation of results,” he affirmed.
The KNEC has already introduced searches to deter the use of mobile phones in exam halls. It has also increased the number of personnel to monitor the exams.