The Ministry of Education has threatened to arrest parents whose underage daughters get pregnant and they fail to report those responsible to the police.
Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang said that parents of candidates who give birth during exams will be arrested because those are defilement cases that had not been brought to the attention of authorities.
“We shall go to those villages where people make local arrangements. We shall arrest anybody, including the parents, who engage in these back-room deals while they compromise the future of their children,” Dr Kipsang said.
“One of the issues that came out very strongly is teenage pregnancies. These girls are underage, so we cannot talk of consent. It is actually defilement. This is a question of assault, which makes it a security threat,” Dr Kipsang said, attributing them to ‘kangaroo courts in villages’.
At least 10 girls were confirmed to have given birth during the three-day Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams period.
In Homa Bay, a pupil at Kikubi Primary School in Suba South Sub-County went into labour and was rushed to a health centre, bringing to four the number of girls, whose examinations were disrupted by labour pains.
The number could be higher because some expectant girls may have chosen not to present themselves for the examinations that guarantee each of the 1.1 million candidates a place in Form One.
Education Cabinet Secretary (CS) Amina Mohamed ordered another investigation into teenage pregnancies despite a report on the main cause of girls dropping out of schools having been released in July.
“We are concerned that a high number of candidates became mothers during the three days of KCPE. If this is happening all year round, then the country could be facing a crisis,” said the CS.
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