The immediate former Principal of Nambale Boys High School in Busia County Solomon Sisuma over the years awarded himself lucrative tenders and grossly mismanaged the school’s funds turning it into a money minting entity to feed his greed for money.
It is now emerging that for the fifteen years he headed the institution he made millions of shillings through being the sole supplier of at least 100 bags of maize annually alongside other commodities such as sugar, beans and rice at highly inflated prices to feed the more than 1000 students at one of the leading high schools in Busia County.
“He is now pressuring the current principal Charles Hongo to allow him to continue supplying these commodities to the school so that he can make money as he was doing as the principal in total disregard of the laws ,” said an insider who requested not to be named.
According to the insider. Hongo has refused to comply with Sisuma’s demands after he was transferred to head Otieno Oyoo High School Hongo’s former school located in Nyando in Kisumu County in a cross transfer exchange that took place two years ago.
However when contacted on phone, Sisuma admitted that in his first year at the school in 2018, Hongo awarded him a tender to supply 100 bags of maize something that many would wonder why the duo decided to ignore the principals of ‘conflict of interest’ .
On his part Hongo was hesitant to either confirm or deny as to whether he indeed awarded his predecessor a tender to supply maize to Nambale High school but said that being new at the institution he couldn’t really tell whether the firm that he awarded the tender to supply maize belonged to Sisuma.
“I approached my friend and asked him that we do this business together something he agreed and went ahead to award me a tender to supply 100 bags of maize during the first year we swooped. Even him (Mr. Hongo) this is what he has been doing here at Otieno Oyoo High School”, said Sisuma.
These unfolding events begs the question as to whether the Ministry of Education is privy to what goes on in these institutions of learning as far as School Principals engaging in doing business with the schools they head is concerned and if the two Principals should be left to go Scot free given their confessions.
We sought to know from the CS for Education Professor George Magoha what his Ministry was doing to eradicate this habit that has now become the norm and he was quick to say, ” For as long as I am the CS for Education in this Republic of Kenya, I shall not allow School Principals to breach the laid down rules for their own selfish interests and on this one my Ministry shall investigate into the matter upon which I assure you that action shall be taken without fear or favour”.
The worst aspect of the whole mess is the fact that Sisuma is alleged to have colluded with contractors of his choice to embezzle the school’s funds especially whenever there were
construction activities at the institution.
“They formed a deadly conspiracy and relegated the Board of Management to the background as the Principal engaged in the malpractice without accountability but with total impunity;” said a long serving teacher at the institution.
The story does not stop there, since it is common knowledge all over the county that it’s during Sisuma’s tenure that examination cheating in all the papers of the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examinations was rife year after year until after the then Cabinet Secretary for education Dr. Fred Matiang’i cracked the whip that cracked the syndicates backbone.
The teachers said that the situation got so bad that the government had to cancel the school’s examination results under Sisuma as a direct result for massive examination cheating presided over by the immediate former Principal Mr. Sisuma.
What many stakeholders including parents whose children were affected by the cancellation of exams are wondering is why the government and the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) did not take any disciplinary action against the Principal but merely transferred him to another school where he is likely to continue with the same behavior or practices similar to those that he ruthlessly executed at Nambale High SchooL during his 15 years tenure as the head of the institution.
They are now demanding for an external forensic audit to be conducted at the institution covering all the years Sisuma has headed it to ensure that the monies lost are accounted for and legal action taken against him for all the wrongs he might have executed at the school.