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Raila: How change of KCPE & KCSE exam printer bungled national exams

Raila alleges that change of KCPE & KCSE exam printer bungled national exams

Azimio leader Raila Odinga during a press briefing in Nairobi on December 6, 2023

In a press statement on December 6, the leader of the opposition, Raila Odinga, addressed the nation, expressing grave concerns over the integrity of Kenya's national examinations and certificates.

Odinga alleged that recent changes in the management of exam printing have compromised the credibility of the education sector.

The statement began with Odinga's firm stance on the importance of education reforms and their role in maintaining the dignity and integrity of Kenya's education sector.

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He stated, "Back in 2016, and following serious concerns about the management of national exams, the Government of Kenya identified a secure printing firm in the UK - Stephen Austin Printing Ltd."

Stephen Austin Printing deals with several exams and other high stakes documents in different parts of the world.

Expressing dissatisfaction with recent developments, Odinga asserted, "We have established that early this year, the Kenya Kwanza administration suddenly and abruptly stopped this contract just because the UK company refused to give kickbacks."

He accused the government of awarding the printing contract to a politically-correct local company without following legal procurement processes, which outsourced the contract to a company in India.

"This led to the mess where the results received expensively using the short code were different from the one on the KNEC portal and sent to schools. It led to what KNEC has called misalignment of marks and grades.

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"Grades in Science and Social Studies as well as Religious Studies were truncated. The system deployed could not produce the Plus and Minus signs. What a shame," Odinga said.

The opposition leader called for a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding the change in the printing process.

He reiterated that Kenyans must be informed of how the Mombasa Road firm was identified and awarded the tender and if procurement laws were followed.

The opposition leader warned of the consequences saying that the buck stops with President William Ruto.

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"It is our firm belief that mega corruption in billions cannot happen without the complicity of the top. Whether it is Sh17 billion in fuel or the billions involved in the poisonous cooking oil, we know the dynamics of how the government operates," he said.

In concluding the statement, Odinga reached out to key education stakeholders, stating that he had written to the following bodies:

  1. The Catholic Bishops Conference,
  2. The National Council of Churches of Kenya,
  3. The Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims,
  4. The Kenya Secondary School Heads Association,
  5. The Primary School Head Teachers association,
  6. The Kenya National Union of Teachers,
  7. The Law Society of Kenya,
  8. The Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers,
  9. The National Parents Association,
  10. The Kenya Private Schools Association,
  11. The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission,
  12. The Directorate of Criminal Investigations,
  13. The Federation of Kenya Employers.

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