Lack of infrastructure in schools has been cited as the major hindrance to education in Butula Sub County in Busia County resulting to outbreak of waterborne diseases amongst the population rendering majority to languish in poverty
According to the residents, lack of enough secondary schools, classrooms headache, clean water sources within the localities of the Sub-County and limited agricultural incentives were among the pertinent concerns the residents are putting to task their leaders after the forthcoming General elections.
Speaking at Esibembe Primary school during an engagement with various political candidates in the coming general election, they cited the big gap between primary and secondary school to be a major stumbling block toward attaining 100% transition in the sub county.
“We only have 29 secondary schools within this sub county against 74 primary schools that graduate a high number of KCPE candidates. We appeal to leaders to address this issue,” said Bernard Okumu, a resident of Butula.
Majority of students are forced to walk long distances to quench their thirst for secondary school in the neighbouring counties of Siaya and Kakamenga.
Okumu noted insufficient classrooms as a major challenge considering the high number of students enrolled every year, in accordance with the National government policy of equal opportunity for every child to access education.
Mildred Narocho, another resident, raised concern over water shortage in the area, appealing to incoming leaders starting with area MP to provide solar panels for pumping water especially during dry seasons to ensure every home and school has access to sufficient water supply.
“Sometimes after coming from school, our children waste a lot of time travelling long distances looking for water that they will use at school the following day,” lamented Narocho.
David Wanga, a Parliamentary aspirant in Butula constituency on Independent ticket has acknowledged the concerns of the residents, promising to ensure that the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) would address primary secondary gap among other issues.
Addressing residents while on the campaign trail, the MP hopeful lamented the sorry state of affairs within the constituency.
“Education is the eye opener for any developing society. I will use my position if elected to address the nightmare in the education sectors, ranging from poor structures, shortage of teachers and school fees to vulnerable students in Butuala constituency,” said Wanga, adding that CDF projects would only be targeted to benefit residents within the constituency.
The aspiring MP promised to lead in championing the interests of his residents, while overseeing the actualization of national government policies at the local level.
“I will partner with the county government to ensure that they serve my constituency residents satisfactorily,” added Wanga.
He committed to preparing a joint stakeholder conference with the Ministry of Education within the Sub-county to discuss challenges in the sector and find amicable solutions.
The concerned residents lamented that bursary forms were given with discrimination, a factor that denies deserving children access to education. Poverty levels are very high in Butula sub-county, hence many households are not able to sufficiently cater for their children’s education.
They also urged politicians to prioritize road construction and maintenance to enable ease of movement within the sub-county, insisting that road development should form part of their manifesto because there is a budgetary allocation meant for roads from the National government.
She further appealed to aspiring politicians to facilitate them with fertilizers and high breed seeds to increase prospects of higher yield, adding that it would help them be self-reliant as opposed to relying on hand-outs from the politicians.
By Absalom Namwalo