By Judith Akolo
Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) Board has been dissolved and officials sent packing.
Education Cabinet Secretary Dr. Fred Matiang’i asked his colleague, Interior Cabinet Secretary Gen.(Rtd.) Joseph Nkaissery to immediately arrest those implicated who include the CEO Dr. Joseph Kivilu.
The government decision follows the large number of examination irregularities recorded in the 2015 KCSE examination.
President Uhuru Kenyatta has at the same time appointed the immediate former University of Nairobi (UoN) Vice Chancellor Prof. George Magoha, the new board Chairman of KNEC with immediate effect. Prof. Magoha takes over from Prof. Kabiru Karanja who has been sent home.
Without wasting time, Gen.(Rtd.) Nkaissery ordered the arrest of the officials and “if they have not been arrested already, they should voluntarily report to the nearest police station,” said Nkaisery.
Those implicated in the vice included the CEO Dr. Joseph Kivilu, Senior Deputy Secretary Ambia Noor, Deputy Secretary Maundu Mantenzawa, Senior Deputy Secretary Sarah Majani and Deputy Secretary Richard Mwangangi.
The others are; Principal Examination Secretary Thomas Mckenzie, Senior Deputy Secretary Bobby Nyaga, Senior Deputy Secretary Geoffrey Gitigo and Principal Supply chain Secretary Michael Ndua.
Nkaisery said the officials under arrest will be required to show course why legal action should not be taken against them.
The Interior CS who was accompanied by Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet, said the move will help to allow the new board to begin work on a new slate.
The move follows a directive by President Uhuru Kenyatta for a thorough investigations into the irregularities in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) of 2015.
The President directed the Cabinet Secretaries for Education, Science and Technology and Interior and Coordination of National Government to review and implement measures aimed at mitigating malpractices in the national examination management process.
The team that has been in office for less than two years found themselves on the receiving end of the appointing authority after according to Matiang’i preliminary investigations, following he presidential directive, revealed complicity, irregularities and illegitimate activities “on a number of fronts within and outside of the KNEC.
“God has given us children, it is our responsibility to raise them up in circumstances of honesty and integrity,” said Matiang’i and added, “To subject the lives of so many children to uncertainty on account of recklessness is clearly unacceptable.”
The new board has been mandated to immediately begin the vetting exercise of senior staff at the KNEC, “to determine their suitability to continue holding their offices.”
Matiang’i directed the new board to reform and re-engineer the operation of the KNEC as well as conduct a thorough audit and review of the entire examination system and processes and “enhance security and integrity of the national examination process.”
He asked the new board to embrace new technologies and modern practices to maintain the highest integrity of examination management systems and processes.
The Education CS said those found to been culpable will face the full force of the law adding that no one should be allowed to move to another office after committing an illegality, “they must be punished for compromising the future of our children.”
Last year’s national examinations, KCSE and the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) recorded the highest number of exam irregularities.
Over 5000 candidates were found to have cheated in the KCSE with the results being cancelled.
Of all the 47 Counties only Isiolo County was found to have had a clean bill.