Parliament has summoned Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed to shed light on revelations that merchants are oversupplying textbooks to secondary schools.
The National Assembly’s Education Committee chaired by Tinderet MP Julius Melly held a meeting and resolved to summon Ms Mohamed, who will also be expected to explain congestion in schools and delayed release of capitation.
“We want to see the money being used to buy books now go to development of infrastructure and equipping of laboratories in schools,” Mr Melly said.
The MP regretted that schools are congested yet the government is doing little to address the situation that he said may soon get out of hand.
“We are asking the ministry to immediately release infrastructure funds to schools so that they can put in place the necessary facilities. We also want the ministry to release Sh22,244 as capitation and not Sh10,000 as is happening now,” he added.
He said that officials benefiting from the dumping of books in schools must also be held accountable.
The government plan to supply books to schools started last year and replaced an equally corruption-prone system where schools bought books from booksellers.
However, the new system seems not to be working as some officials and the Education ministry have colluded to supply more books to schools than needed in order to cash in on billions of shillings from the sector.
The Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha), Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut), National Parents Association (NPA) and Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) have protested against this latest scandal.
Kessha has hence asked that book supplies be suspended for four years in order to allow schools to utilise what is available.
Knut has written to Ms Mohamed over the issue of books and congestion in schools following the 100 percent transition policy.
“There are also issues that need to be addressed regarding selection and supply of textbooks to Form One students,” the Knut said.