No food bearing leaders’ campaign pictures — CS
Governors put their portraits on mock exam paper, T-shirts and on school buses. ‘I have never seen such madness in my life,’ says Matiang’i
Education CS Fred Matiang’i yesterday criticised politicians who wanted to provide food — bearing their photos and slogans — to KPCE exam candidates in Mombasa. He said the government will not allow petty politics in schools.
Matiang’i supported Coast Regional coordinator Nelson Marwa’s directive to bar politicians from providing food to KCPE exam candidates.
Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho wanted to distribute food in packages bearing his portrait and a picture of cheering children.
The containers bore the words ‘Hassan Joho wishes you the best in your annual exams, baba ni kulea … 001’.
Matiang’i said it is unfortunate lead- ers are taking politics to schoolchildren for selfish interests. He spoke in Kwale as he toured schools.
He said primary and secondary school education is a national and not a county function. “If everyone goes to our schools and prints T-shirts and portraits, how would the schools look?” Matiang’i asked.
He said the government is not banning politicians from feeding children, but they are asking “simple common sense questions”. “You take bread and put your portrait on it and bring it to the children, can’t we be satisfied if your portrait is not there? We will not allow it to happen now or in the future,” Matiang’i said.
The CS said the government will not allow anarchy in such issues. “You saw what they did during the mock exams. Governors put their portraits on exam papers. I have never seen such madness in my life. Others bought school buses and put pictures of themselves on them,” he said. “Imagine walking into a school and you find a face of governor in one wall and a face of another pretender in a second wall.”
Matiang’i said those who want to provide food for schools must consult the deputy county education directors and government officials. “What I expect to see in a school is a President’s portrait, period,” he said.
He said Muslim and Christian organisations support schools, but they never blow their own trumpets. “The Catholic Church supports children in many ways and they don’t go around arguing with the county, regional commissioners, the Education CS and telling everyone off,” Matiang’i said.
On Monday, Marwa barred politicians from providing food to KCPE candidates. Schools in Mombasa obeyed the directive and turned down the food.
‘IMAGINE WALKING INTO A SCHOOL AND YOU FIND A FACE OF GOVERNOR IN ONE WALL AND A FACE OF ANOTHER PRETENDER IN A SECOND WALL’
Education CS Fred Matiang’i shakes hands with standard eight candidates at Jomo Kenyatta Primary School yesterday after supervising KCPE exam container opening in Msambweni subcounty offices