NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 22 – The government has urged education stakeholders to ensure that conflicts in schools are solved within established mechanisms.
This follows unrest by students that has seen fire outbreaks in over 70 schools.
Government Spokesman Eric Kiraithe urged school heads to work hand in hand with the security organs to manage the situation.
He says the government is investigating the incidents, which he indicates includes sabotage by some education stakeholders against Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i.
He says the government is keen on restoring calm on schools warning that those found culpable will be brought to book.
“Those who are trying to sabotage the Cabinet Secretary are cowards, we don’t want to wait for their activities to succeed so that we investigate,” he said.
He also warned petrol stations that are selling fuel to students that they will be held liable if found guilty.
“Those who own petrol stations and are selling petroleum products to students, if arson is traced back to your station, you will face the law,” he warned.
Meanwhile, Homa Bay County Commissioner Farah Maalim has warned that school principals and teachers will be held liable in case of a fire outbreak in their schools.
Maalim says the arm of the law will not only target suspected students in case of an inferno in the schools.
He says that teachers must be on the lookout and ensure that school property is protected.
Maalim further urged boards of management to ensure there is proper dialogue in the schools to allow students and non-teaching staff to air their grievances.
A special investigation committee set up to probe arson in schools has been given 30 days to submit a report on the incidents which are raising serious concern.
A statement signed by Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and his Interior Ministry counterpart Joseph Nkaissery indicated that the report should clearly outline measures to reduce cases of unrest.