2023 KCSE: President Ruto Orders Probe into Missing Candidates

In a significant move on Monday, January 8, President William Ruto directed an investigation into the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) following revelations from the Education Cabinet Secretary. The Secretary disclosed that a staggering 3,000 students who had registered for the 2023 KCSE failed to participate in the examinations. President Ruto, perplexed by this revelation, has sought a comprehensive understanding of the reasons behind the absence of these candidates.

The President did not specify a timeframe for the investigating committee to present its findings. Simultaneously, he emphasized the need for the Ministry of Education to intensify efforts against exam cheating, calling for stringent actions against both students and teachers involved in such malpractices.

The briefing occurred at the Eldoret State Lodge in Uasin Gishu County, just moments before the release of the KCSE results. David Njengere, the CEO of the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC), assured that measures had been implemented to prevent the leakage of the 2023 KCSE exams before administration. Njengere highlighted the success of the double collection policy, which mapped examination centers and streamlined collection points to prevent early exposure of second session papers, a problem persisting since 2016.

During the release of the 2023 KCSE results, Basic Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang stressed the importance of all headteachers ensuring that students were registered through the National Education Management Information System (NEMIS). This requirement, applicable to both public and private schools across the country, aims to ensure adherence to NEMIS regulations set by the Ministry of Education.

Kipsang speculated that the cases of students not sitting for KCSE exams might be attributed to non-compliance with NEMIS regulations, suggesting the possibility that some of the 3,000 absent students may not have existed in the first place. He hinted at the presence of rogue elements within the education sector, alleging that non-existent students might be fraudulently registered to benefit from the government’s capitation program. The unfolding situation raises concerns about the integrity of the examination system and prompts a critical examination of registration processes within the education sector.


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