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Othaya Boys Principal in Jail for Refusing Admission of Suspended Candidates

The Principal of Othaya Boys High School has been found guilty of contempt of court and was set to spend six months in jail for violating the order to readmit twenty students.

Othaya Boys High School Principal Edward Muhuni was found guilty of disobeying an order issued on the 23rd of March that required him to re-admit 20 candidates who had been suspended for assault according to High Court Judge Justice Florence Muchemi’s ruling.

Justice Muchemi said that students via their lawyer Muhoho Gichimu had provided enough proof that the order had been served to the principal and that the Board of Management (BOM) of the school.

According to Justice Muchemi, the school’s administrators had received sufficient evidence including stamped copies that confirmed the order and that the school’s administrators had issued a response.

“Service orders on the respondent have not been denied in this application as the school’s BOM has replied trying to justify its failure to obey the said order,” said Justice Muchemi.

In addition, the court revealed that if the school had a problem with obeying the order, they should have challenged it in court. However, this was not done instead they remained stubborn and shut the students out of school.

Court documents reveal that students were suspended in October last year after attacking three of their classmates with one being left injured.

Mr Muhuni stated in an affidavit that he rescued the three students from the school’s ablution block where the incident happened and then reported it to the police station.

Following being charged in court, the school elected to suspend them at a BOM meeting because they had been suspected of bullying other learners.

However, the students went to the High Court and requested the school’s administration to re-admit them pending the outcome of the lawsuit.

After the orders were given students and parents were called into a meeting with the school’s administrators to deliberate on how they would sit their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations that were scheduled to be done in March this year.

The school directed the boys to report and be re-admitted and then pay Kshs. 3,500.

However, according to the student’s lawyer Mr Muhoho, the school’s administration had violated the terms of the invitation.

“The students were informed that they would be day schoolers and were to be accommodated in a nearby local school where an external cook and an armed officer contracted by the school were to take care of them,” said Muhoho.

The said amount of Kshs. 3,500 was to cover the cost of the external cook’s services.

Mr Muhoho claimed that during the school BOM meeting, school administrators condemned the students for suing the school.

Besides, Muhoho said in the court documents that the administrators only called the meeting due to the court order after the county director of education intervened.

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