Another tragedy befalls Kakamega School as tree destroys classroom

Sunday, January 9th, 2022 11:15 | By
Kakamega School entrance. Photo/PD/File

A weekend incident in which a tree that was being cut, fell and completely destroyed a classroom at Kakamega School, is stoking a fresh storm.

The incident comes amid the unease calm precipitated by the last term dormitory fire where students were each forced to pay Sh10,000 as fine before readmission.

 What allegedly began on Friday night as a mission to clear up a site for construction of five classrooms for the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) by a sawmiller, suddenly came to an abrupt stop after a huge tree that was being cut, fell on the classroom block destroying it completely.

 Asked who would shoulder the cost of repairing the destroyed building, Kakamega School Board of Management (BoM) Chairman Prof Egara Kabaji said the board would meet to investigate and decide on the matter. 

On November 10, last year, the school BoM slapped a Sh9,823 fine against every student for repair of a dormitory razed by fire whose source remains a mystery.

 Kabaji said a proposal was on the table to have some trees cut, to give way for the CBC classroom.

 “The principal is responsible for the day to day running of the school. Up to now, he has not briefed me about the destruction. What I know is that the executive board sat on December 28, last year and handed over the contract for construction of five CBC classrooms to the contractor,” he said. 

Reached for a comment over the incident, the school’s principal Gerald Orina said that it was an accident.

Regulations governing the cutting of trees in public institutions dictate that the management would constitute an environment committee, that would derive a minute outlining the scope and expected date when the tree felling would be carried.

 The resolution would then be forwarded to the forest department for approval, which would only take place after a site visit.  

Yesterday, the assistant head of conservancy Western Martin Mamati said his office did not sanction the cutting of trees at the school.

 “We are sending a team to the school to investigate the matter. But when I talked to the Lurambi sub-county forest officer, she confirmed to me that no request was made to her office,” Mamati said.

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