Tears of joy flew freely at the Gusii stadium as more than 500 bright and needy students who had not reported to school benefitted from a scholarship program dubbed Elimu na Simba, a function graced by Education CS Ezekiel Machogu.
Their parents and guardians who had lost hope for their children to continue with their studies after registering impressive marks in their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) could not hide their delight after the Kisii County Governor Simba Arati came for their rescue.
Some of the students had received admission letters from high performing schools in the country like Mangu High School, Kapsabet Boys, Kisumu, Nyambaria high school, Nyabururu girls, Riokindo boys and Kereri Girls and they will be fully sponsored from form one to form four.
Equally, CS Machogu who hailed Simba for reaching the needy in the county offered to facilitate full sponsorship to 20 students and asked the Governor to work closely with his office to come up with the names of the beneficiaries.
Simba regretted that bright students with as high as 413, 407, 401, 395, 385, 383 marks were still out due to lack of school fees adding that his administration will fully support the national government’s 100 per cent transition policy.
“You have been given an opportunity to continue with your studies after your hope had dwindled. I ask you to work hard, obtain straight As in your Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) and make Kisii county proud,” urged Simba.
The scheme, supporting those who scored 350 marks, is Governor Simba’s personal initiative funded by well-wishers, including the Deputy Governor Dr. Robert Monda, County Executive Committee members, County Secretary, County Attorney, Chief Officers among other sponsors.
“Indeed, Education is a worthy equalizer which enables even the ‘poor of the poor’ to scale the social, economic and sometimes political and leadership ladder. That is why we are assisting these bright students to pursue their education,” noted Simba.
Simba was accompanied by his Deputy, the Kisii County Assembly leadership, the County Secretary and Head of County Public Service James Ntabo, County Executive Committee (CEC) members, County Attorney Alfred Nyandieka Chief Officers among other senior government officers.
The governor said that his administration has re- introduced the County Bursary which will soon be launched.
“We have done a supplementary budget which once approved, will enable us to disburse 135 million shillings already allocated for bursary this year," announced the Governor.
Dr. Monda welcomed the programme and encouraged the beneficiaries to work hard and catch up with others given that they will go to school almost a month after the official reporting date.