Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) has cancelled the registration of hundreds of thousands of candidates as it investigates possible collusion in use of fake birth certificates.
The Standard has established that parents and head teachers in schools countrywide might have colluded to use false birth papers to register candidates for this year’s Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations.
The Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) has declared that the affected candidates will not be allowed to sit the examinations later this year unless proper records are supplied and those behind the fraud punished. Knec data shows that 1.78 million candidates were registered to sit the 2019 examinations, whose registration deadline was February 15.
Of these, 1,089,671 were KCPE candidates while 698,935 students registered for KCSE, from all the 10,304 centers.
Data showed that the majority of malpractices occurred in primary schools. Knec subsequently cancelled the registration of 342,916 KCPE candidates and 28,713 in secondary schools.
This means that only 746,755 candidates have validly been registered to sit the KCPE examinations while only 670,222 candidates can sit the KCSE tests.
Knec’s data further exposes counties whose teachers and parents breached registration procedures. Meru has the highest number of cancelled registrations, with 23,806 candidates in primary and 3,646 in secondary schools. Marsabit has the fewest cases, with only 45 students’ registration questioned, of which 42 are in primary schools.
Knec Chief Executive Officer Mercy Karogo said the anomalies were detected during a validation exercise by the agency.
Kenya Secondary School Heads Association national chairman Kahi Indimuli said some birth certificates were not compatible with the National Education Management Information System.
He said the problem could be traced to Form One admission documents. “Maybe the principals used different birth certificates from the ones the children were admitted with to Form One.
And some birth certificates used in Class Eight also could differ from those that children were admitted with to primary schools,” Mr Indimuli said.