Uasin Gishu:Teachers and pupils forced to share two dilapidated toilets

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By Mahlon Lichuma

Ten teachers of Lelmokwo primary school in Uasin Gishu County are caught between a rock and a hard place as they are forced to share two dilapidated toilets which are almost full with the learners.

The public school which is situated in Kesses Sub County with a population of more than 250 learners is now facing imminent closure by the public health officials over lack of toilets and water.

A visit to the school on Friday showed that the pupils were being forced to come to school in the morning with water from their homes to be used to prepare meals for them and the teachers.

Parents who talked to Hubzmedia  said that the learners are facing acute shortage of the commodity after a borehole dug 10 years ago went dry.

According to the school board of management chairperson Ms Mercy Korir, many parents from the area are poor and can barely afford a
decent meal, let alone make a contribution for the construction of a pit latrine.

“We have only two toilets which are almost full and risky with several cracks which are being shared between the teaching and none teaching staff and learners,” said Ms Korir

She lamented that all the seven latrines that were being used by the pupils got filled up two years ago because of being overused while
another sunk in.

The situation, Ms Korir avers, leaves the teachers and learners at the school with no option but to share the only  remaining two iron sheet structure facilities.

She said that they have been waiting for the regional government ‘s support to no avail forcing them to appeal for support from
well-wishers and non-governmental organizations.

“Our teachers have to endure humiliation while answering calls of nature by pumping with learners in the same latrine. We are now
calling on any well-wisher or non governmental organization to come to
our help to avert the closure of the school,” pleaded Ms Korir.

Ms Korir said the last time the institution got assistance from the National government constituency development fund was nine years ago for the construction of three classes.

A representative in charge of junior secondary school Andrew Kibet said the situation at the school has not been good and called on
well-wishers to come to their rescue so that tutors and learners can be comfortable.

“Majority of the learners come from as far as five kilometres and are forced to carry water to school every morning which does not argue
well if they are expected to excel in their national exams,” said Kibet.

He added that apart from lack of water and toilets, the school also lacks enough classes for learners, a situation that has forced
teachers to teach children in an open field.

Kibet said the last new class to be built in the school was five years ago during the tenure of former area MP Swarup Mishra and that since
then; no other infrastructural development project has been initiated at the institution.

“The last time we saw new classes being constructed in this school was during the tenure of former MP Mishra. The number of learners continues to increase and we need more classes,” he said.

Julius Songok, who is the area Uasin Gishu County Assembly representative, said his office was aware of the challenges facing the
school; hence he has already budgeted for construction of new toilets in this financial year.

“It is true the school has been having a myriad of challenges and it is part of what we have budgeted for in the 2023/24 financial year.
There should be no cause for worry by the teachers and pupils now that everything is under control under my leadership,” assured the Tulwet/Chuiyat MCA.

He, however, regretted that the issue of water shortage at the school had never been brought to his attention but hastened to add that he
was going to look into the matter and address it accordingly.

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