- One of the 14 dead pupils of Kakamega primary school buried
- Sports CS Amina Mohamed attended Nailah Kiverenge’s funeral service
- Ibrahim Kiverenge said he spoke to her daughter last on Sunday
- Kiverenge said his daughter wanted to be doctor in the military when she grows up
By Wilson Abiri
One of the 14 pupils who died at Kakamega primary school following a stampede at Kakamega primary school on Monday has been buried.
The funeral service of Nailah Kiverenge,10, was held today at Jamia mosque in Kakamega town.
Parents and relatives of the late Nailah could not hold their tears as the casket bearing the remains of the fallen angel made its way to Jamia mosque around 2.30 pm.
People wept and those who were overcame by grief were assisted by volunteers from the Kenya Red Cross.
The funeral service was attended by Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala, Ikolomani MP Bernard Shinali, nominated senator Naomi Shiyonga, Kakamega Assembly minority leader David Ndakwa, Kakamega County ANC chairman Julius Arunga and Emanuel Buchichi, ANC youth leader for Kakamega county.
Nailah met her untimely death on Monday evening while trying to save her younger brother, Takirr Kiverenge.
Ibrahim Kiberenge, the deceased father, told the mourners that his daughter was hardworking and wanted to become a doctor in the military when she grows up.
“I want to pass my exams and later study Medicine so that later in life I would be a medic in the Kenya Defense Forces. “said Kiverenge.
Kiverenge said he last spoke to Nailah on Sunday evening and that in the morning, they just left for school around 6.20am since he was still asleep, saying it was not normal for them to go to school without waking them up.
“I waited for my children to reach home that evening but around 5.30pm, I received information that there has been an accident at Kakamega primary, forcing me to rush to the school to check on my children,” he said.
“when I reached at the school, the first thing I saw was one of her shoe and books scattered all over the staircase. At this point, I panicked since I had not traced them. We rushed to the Kakamega County Teaching and Referral and again she wasn’t among the injured pupils who were receiving first aid,” Kiverenge added.
“As tears started rolling down his cheeks freely, Kiverenge said upon reaching the mortuary, he saw the lifeless body of Nailah lying on the floor, second from the door at the morgue. “I just admitted her to the school three weeks ago and she is no more,”
Kiverenge told the mourners that he asked a security guard where other pupils had been taken and he (security guard) informed him that 13 pupils had died and had already been taken to the mortuary.
As tears started rolling down his cheeks freely, Kiverenge said upon reaching the mortuary, he saw the lifeless body of Nailah lying on the floor, second from the door at the morgue. “I just admitted her to the school three weeks ago and she is no more,”.
Sports Cabinet Secretary, Amina Mohammed, a close friend of Kiverenge, while mourning Nailah, said she had high hopes in the pupil’s courtesy of her good performance in class.
“No parent is supposed to bury his children as it’s the case today. As a mother who understand the pain we endure when giving birth, it’s a painful experience losing your first born child at such a tender age,” said Amina.
Senator Malala said he will employ Kiverenge at his office as a way of giving solace to him, his longtime friend.
Nominated senator Naomi Shiyonga said losing 14 young souls is a tragedy saying the government should carry out an audit to ascertain whether the classes children across the country learn from are safe as a way of averting a similar tragedy.
Shiyonga also said classes should have emergency doors for easy evacuation of pupils in case of an emergency, saying the three storey building at Kakamega primary doesn’t have emergency exits. His sentiments were echoed by Mr Shinali, Ikolomani MP who said the contractor did a shoddy work.
Meanwhile, the Kenya union of post primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) officials also visited Kakamega Primary School in the morning to condole with the affected families and promised a donation of half a million that will cater for the burial expenses of the 14 pupils.
Kuppet Secretary General, Akello Misori asked Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha to organise for a national conference on safety and security of learners in schools within fourteen days.
“We cannot afford to postpone these debate any longer. I have already written a letter to Magoha over the same giving him limited time to constitute a national conference on safety and security in our institutions. We want to come up with new guidelines aimed at enhancing safety of our children when in school,” said Misori.
Omboko Milemba, Kuppet chairman said the conference will come up with long lasting solutions to avert similar disasters, saying the 2008 manual on safety and security of learners in school was outdated and that it needed a review.
Meanwhile, Kakamega Primary School has given out the names of the 14 pupils who died in the stampede on Monday.
The requiem mass for the pupils will be held on Friday but one of them, Nailah Kiverenge was buried yesterday (Wednesday).
They are Antonnet Iramwenya, Prudence Eliza, Catherine Aloo, Naila Kiverenge, Prince Vermaline, Nichole Achola, Venessa Adesa, Fidel Kumbuti, Simon Waweru, Samuel Simekha, Lavenda Akasa, June Nakhumicha, Joseph Mutsami and Bertha Munywele.
Their requiem mass will be held on Friday at Kakamega primary school.