Parents of candidates who have given birth during exams now risk arrest as the government vowed to crack down on kangaroo courts covering up teenage pregnancies.
Dozens of candidates have sat the exams either pregnant or in maternities after giving birth.
On Thursday, Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang warned that parents of candidates who gave birth during exams could be arrested for 'covering up for the pregnancies'.
Speaking in Nyeri when he distributed the last exam papers, he said the government will crack down on kangaroo courts that cover up the pregnancies.
“One of the issues that came out strongly during the exam period is teenage pregnancies. These girls are underage and thus we cannot talk of consent. It is actually defilement,” Dr Kipsang said.
The Education ministry has termed the situation a security concern, vowing to crack the whip on those involved.
“This is a question of assault, which makes it a security threat. We shall go to those villages because we know there are places where people make local arrangements. We shall arrest those involved, including the parents who engage in these backroom deals, compromising the future of their children,” the PS said.
He noted that police officers and administrators in areas where the cases are reported will also be held responsible for abetting sexual assault on school girls.
At the same time, the PS raised concern over learners sitting exams as private candidates, saying the trend could affect Form One placements.
“In some private centres, children are sitting examinations as private candidates. With this trend, some could find themselves being placed in adult learning centres,” Dr Kipsang said.
The trend is seen as a new tactic by schools to avoid average performance by placing low performing pupils in private centres.
“This will not be allowed to continue. Moving forward, children will sit exams in their schools,” he said.