Having been busy with running the strategic and visionary affairs of my famed, high-end Academy, I have not had much time for matters pertaining Mwisho wa Lami primary even though I have been going to school frequently.
I don’t want to lie. Just like Aisha Jumwa, whose body and heart are in different political parties, my body has been going to Mwisho wa Lami primary while my heart and soul have always been at FioDrelina CBC Pedagogical Academy, Mwisho wa Lami Campus. In short, we will call it Drelina Academy.
If you remember, at the beginning of the term, Bensouda came breathing fire and demanded that we all start morning, afternoon and evening tuition for all students in Class Six and above.
A few of us planned to resist but once Bensouda herself appeared in class, we had no excuse but to go teach as well. For me, things changed when I opened Drelina Academy, which, you will agree required more of my time than the already established Mwisho wa Lami primary.
Luckily, by the time I started spending more time at my academy, Bensouda, too, had stopped going to class or preps.
She had gone back to her normal modus operandi, which is, appearing in school once a week, or not at all.
With the relation between Bensouda and Kuya — my nemesis at school — having gone south, there was no one to inform her that I too wasn’t spending much time in school.
By sheer luck, she found me around the two times she came to school in the last two weeks. Except last Wednesday. That was the day I met the council of elders — Rasto, Alphayo and my father — to explain why I had encroached on my father’s land.
I needed no calculator to know that my brother Ford was behind this. He had been at home over the weekend; and on Sunday, he was seen visiting the elders.
Ford really wanted the school to fail. You see, he had also threatened his wife Rumona, and told her not to come for duty.
On Monday morning, Rumona sent me an SMS: “Deer Dre, I will not come today because my hurby says he will kill me if I curm near you. I will curm when he goes bark to Mombasa. My condolences.”
A day before I met the elders, I went to Hitler’s in the evening. There, I paid Rasto’s bills. I also promised to hire him as the academy’s day watchman in a month’s time.
Rasto was quite helpful. He advised me not to argue with the elders, particularly my father. He told me to accept that I would start paying rent, but that I should be given time until the academy stabilises after which I will start remitting some money to my father monthly.
That is exactly what I did when I met the elders that Wednesday morning. It was an easy moment because Rasto had done a lot to soften them seeing that his eyes were on the job I had promised him.
With the matter sorted, I spent that day at the academy. But an angry Ford was still around, and he had stopped Rumona from coming to school. So I went to Rumona’s class to keep the children busy.
It was a few minutes after 11am when Nyayo came to school riding his motorcycle at a high speed. He had just dropped Bensouda at school and had come to pick me up. “Huyo mama ameekuulizia nikamwambaia umetoka kidogo,” he said. That day I had not stepped foot at Mwisho wa Lami primary. I immediately boarded the boda boda and was at school within a few minutes.
Bensouda had called for a staff meeting to discuss our KCPE preparedness.
“So this is the time you arrive at school?” she asked. I told her I had been in school much earlier and had just gone back home to pick something.
“Which school?” she asked sarcastically. I ignored her and said there was only one school, Mwisho wa Lami primary.
“You think I have no ears Dre?” She posed. “I know everything that happens here. Anyway, let’s talk after the meeting.”
She summoned me to her office after the staff meeting. I had expected her to be very harsh on me, but surprisingly, she sounded polite. She asked me about my new school — the number of pupils, and whether parents were paying school fees.
“A lot of people in Milimani are looking for a good school, and if I recommend them to you, you will even lack space to accommodate them.”
“And those are people who will pay school fees without any problem,” she said.
“I will be very happy if you can help me with that,” I said. “These Mwisho wa Lami people don’t pay fees.”
She said she was willing to help me talk to Milimani parents and others in neighbouring villages to send their children to Drelina Academy.
“But is the school registered?” She asked. I told her about my plan to register the academy early next year. “Right now, all education officials are busy with KCPE and KCSE preparations.”
Bensouda offered to help me get the school registered within a week. “Plus I will get you many pupils.”
From the way she said it, there seemed to be some catch somewhere. I was right, for she then asked me what she would get in return.
I told her I would not forget her, but she insisted that she wanted something specific.
“I want a partnership with you. I will be taking 40 per cent of all fees of the students I bring. What do you think?” She asked. “And I will give you a free hand to spend as much time as you want at your new school. No one will ask you anything.”
It looked like a good offer but 40 per cent was too high, especially since she would be getting money for doing nothing. Yet I knew if I refused, she could easily frustrate me and even ensure that the Academy collapses.
“That sounds good madam,” I said. “But please make it 10 per cent. I have a lot of costs, I need to pay the teachers, food and rent.”
“But you need to get the school registered, and you need to get time to be here. I will reduce it to 30 per cent but for all the school fees collected. That’s my last offer.”
She did not even let me answer. “Pleas be ready with an answer on Monday. I have already talked to someone who will help us with registration,” she said and left immediately.
I have a tough decision to make. To allow a partnership with Bensouda in which she will only get money, or refuse and watch the school collapse. What do you think? Should I agree to partner with Bensouda, or do I tell her to get lost?