The government has issued a stern warning to unscrupulous traders operating gambling machines in Machakos to close them down or risk arrest.
The Machakos Deputy County Commissioner (DCC), Kassim Boso said security agents in the area will not spare any person found operating the machines in his premises since the government outlawed the gadgets last year.
Boso noted that despite the government directing those operating the machines to dismantle them from their premises, a number of traders were still running them unperturbed.
He said the gambling craze has ruined thousands of youth in the country and led to untold suffering, including a rise in suicide cases and should therefore not be allowed to thrive in the society.
“Those businessmen still operating gambling machines should immediately dismantle them before we go for them. The government’s directive for security organs to crack down on these machines is still on and we will not relent until the county has gotten rid of all these illegal machines,” he told the press while in his office.
Boso disclosed that police in Machakos Sub County have so far confiscated 21 betting machines and arrested 10 persons found running gambling joints without valid license from relevant authorities.
The DCC said they plan to destroy the machines once the suspects have had their day in court.
On the ongoing plans by government to attain a 100 percent transition rate from class eight to form one; Boso said the county has already recorded a 95 per cent success rate.
The administrator said out of the 3,212 pupils who sat for their KCPE exams in Machakos Sub County last year, only 141 had not reported to their new schools.
Boso said investigations had revealed that majority of those who never joined form one had opted to enroll in vocational training centres while others had moved to other areas outside the county.
He nevertheless emphasized the government’s commitment to seeing a success of the program by ensuring chiefs and their assistants do account for each and every child in their locality.
“If any student is still at home, chiefs should report such matters to the nearest police post as this is a criminal offence. Chiefs should take action against those who fail to take their children to school since the government is paying for their tuition fees,” he explained.
The government hopes to achieve a 100 per cent transition to secondary schools for all the 1.3 million candidates who sat for sat for last year’s Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE).
Ministry of Education came up with a web -based admission process known as the National Education Management and Information System (NEMIS) to facilitate the success of the program.
The new online system was unveiled last year by former Education CS, Dr. Fred Matiang’i following a successful piloting in 600 institutions out of the 120,000 centres in the country.
The NEMIS platform was deployed to aid digital registration of all primary and secondary school students.
The smart tracking system produces a Unique Personal Identifier (UPI) for registered students that will monitor their performance from primary school, high school and tertiary levels.
Field officers were also told to ensure 100 percent transition of pupils from primary to secondary school.
By Samuel Maina