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Eight students charged with arson

Eight students from St Georges Katheka High School in Vyulya, Mwala Sub County were||Tuesday charged with conspiring to burn a dormitory of the institution.

The suspects who included six girls and two boys were arraigned before Senior Principal Magistrate Evans Keago where they denied two criminal counts including a charge to commit a felony.

They are charged that on July 5 2019, they allegedly attempted to set ablaze a dormitory named Malawi.

They are also said to have burned five mattresses and beddings worth Sh. 25,000 during the Friday night incident.

The offences are in contravention of section 332 and 392 of the Penal code.

Each of the suspects was granted a bond of Sh. 50,000 with a surety of a similar amount or cash bail of Sh. 20,000.

Keago has similarly ordered a lawyer be sought to represent the students when the case comes up for mention on July 16 2019.

Last week, students from Machakos Boys in Machakos County were sent home after they allegedly burned a dormitory for the second time in a span of less than two months.

Arson activities among students led to burning of more than 62 schools within last year alone.

Twenty three other schools experienced student walk out over the same period according to data from the Ministry of Education.

The disturbing images of charred school buildings and damaged students’ personal effects has elicited worry among education stakeholders and security organs, with Members of Parliament proposing a raft of measures to curb the worrying trend including stationing of sleuths to snoop on criminal elements in public schools.

By Samuel Maina/ Stella Mbula/Dominic Mutisya

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