Students from Nyambaria High School in Nyamira County took matters into their own hands on Tuesday, expelling exam officials amidst accusations of harassment and intimidation during the ongoing national examinations.
The school had previously gained notoriety for topping the 2022 KCSE results.
While the school attributed its success to hard work and dedication, skeptics raised concerns about possible exam irregularities without presenting any concrete evidence.
Last week, the school’s principal, Charles Onyari, was suspended over unspecified exam irregularities, leaving the nature of his involvement undisclosed.
In response to the escalating situation, security officers were deployed, and regional examination officers camped at the school to restore order. Students, who are currently sitting for the exams, claimed they were being subjected to harassment by invigilators and other officials deployed to oversee the tests due to suspicions of their involvement in exam theft.
Allegations of intrusive searches, as exam officials sought evidence of cheating, further fueled tensions at the school.
Exam irregularities, often involving collusion between teachers and officials, have been a longstanding issue in the education sector.
Leaders from the region expressed concerns over what they perceive as profiling of Nyambaria High School and other schools in the Kisii region during the exam period.
Past incidents of exam irregularities have led to the cancellation of results for some schools, compelling affected students to repeat classes.
On the same day, a separate incident unfolded as a student was arrested with a mobile phone containing exam papers.
Authorities are now conducting a manhunt for a WhatsApp group admin accused of selling exam papers to students.