The boys were sent home to allow time to assess the damage and carry out repairs on the damaged dormitory
Lubinu Boys High School in Mumias East constituency, Kakamega County, has been closed indefinitely after a Sunday morning fire that razed down a dormitory.
The decision was arrived at after a meeting between the school management and the Ministry of Education that resolved have the management repair part of the 225-capacity dormitory that was burnt down.
Mr Johannes Weta, a board member at the school, said the management decided to send the boys home to allow time to assess the damage and carry out repairs on the damaged dormitory.
“There was a lot of tension in the school since yesterday when the dormitory caught fire. Some students lost their belongings so we have decided to send the students home to get new items as we repair the dormitory so that we can accommodate all students in the school,” said Mr Weta.
He said the school management will communicate to the parents when they will be sending their sons back to school once proper arrangements will have been made.
“We shall engage the Ministry of Public Works to assess the degree of the damages and help us in determining the amount required to repair the destroyed dormitory,” he added.
According to Mr Weta, the management had given the police crucial leads that could help in nabbing suspects who allegedly torched the storey building housing Osundwa dormitory on the top floor and Mbati dormitory on the ground floor.
Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali said the NG-CDF committee would through the disaster kitty fund the repair of the dormitory if necessary measures will be taken by the school to identify the culprits.
“We are willing to allocate money towards repair of the dormitory. But this will depend on the willingness of the school management to firmly deal with the ordeal by identifying the boys who torched the dorm. Otherwise, it will not be prudent to put public money on a project that will be torched again in the near future,” said Mr Washiali.
The MP criticised the government policy of compulsory 100 per cent transition to secondary school saying it was pushing students ill-mannered students to the secondary level.
“We have bad elements among those who are pushed to secondary school through the government policy and they are influencing others to do all manner of bad things, including burning schools,” he said.
The MP insisted on the abolishment of boarding schools to allow every child to learn and return home in the evening so that they are under the care of their parents.
He also urged all principals in the county to be alert and vigilant to avoid more fire incidents in their schools.
The MP accused the school management of hiring security officers who don’t understand the local dialect.
“Even when people are discussing about burning the school, the security officers cannot tell because they don’t understand the local language. It is important that the security firm guarding the school hires locals for proper running of the security situation in the school,” he said.
Mumias East sub-county police commander Mohammed Kullow said they were investigating reports that there had been warnings through written leaflets from unnamed students that they wanted to go back home.
“We have been told that some students had written to the school principal to send them back home to collect schools fees. Others demanded a change in the school meal so that they eat meat frequently,” said the area police boss.