NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 7 – The 2016 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations kicked off countrywide on Monday amid tight security measures to curb cheating which was rampant in previous years when thousands of candidates were disqualified.
A spot check by Capital FM News showed that students were thoroughly frisked before sitting for the Mathematics and Chemistry papers, in line with regulations set by the Kenya National Examinations Council(KNEC).
We spoke to Nairobi Milimani Secondary School Principal Merencia Okemwa who outlined some of the additional measures taken to safeguard the integrity of the process.
“We come to the centre, we hand over to the supervisor who then administers the paper, after that, I witness the opening and the sealing, then he will hand over the scripts to me to take back to the Sub-County Director of Education’s office,” she explained of the examination administered to 577,000 candidates countrywide.
Capital FM News also spoke to some of the candidates who exuded confidence that they would pass their exams which is key in determining their future.
“Mathematics being my best exam, I feel it is the best paper I have ever sat for. I expect to get a straight A,” one of the candidates Moses Muiya said.
Another candidate Ali Noor was equally confident “I hope that this exam will be done in a fair way because we have not had of anything like leakages or anything of the sort so I expect and think that it will be fair.”
The situation was the same in Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru, Nyeri and all other counties toured by top Education Ministry officials led by Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i who is in Murang’a where he supervised the distribution of examination papers.
KNEC Chairman Professor George Magoha led a team from his office on impromptu tours in Nakuru schools and examination centres to ensure all went well.
In Mombasa, Coast Regional Coordinator Nelson Marwa told journalists that they are not leaving anything to chance in ensuring that examinations are undertaken as per the regulations from the ministry and KNEC.
“Systems have been put in place, security is very tight. No exams leaves the container without escort, no exams comes to the container without escort and no exams go to Nairobi without escort. There is tight security and any interference in between will mean the officers go home regardless of who you are,” he stated.
Marwa stated that more police officers have also been deployed to guard schools during the examination period.