Raila Odinga claims Ruto administration canceled the contract awarded to UK firm after it declined to give bribes in the printing of KCPE.
Leader of Azimio Raila Odinga revealed a blunder made by President William Ruto’s team that resulted in the significant irregularities seen in the results of the 2023 Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exam.
During a press conference on Wednesday, Raila claimed that the contract originally awarded to a UK-based company to print exams had been canceled by Ruto’s administration.
Instead, Raila asserted, the government gave the contract to a company with headquarters on Mombasa Road.
The Azimio leader alleged that the reason for canceling the contract was that the UK firm declined to give bribes to the government.
“We’ve established that early this year the government abruptly stopped this contract because the UK company refused to give kickbacks. Without following any legal process, the KK awarded the KCPE contract to a politically connected local company based in Mombasa Road in Nairobi.”
“The government was advised that the local company could not print the exams and ensure its security, especially on short notice. Nobody would budge because there were kickbacks involved.”
The Azimio leader claimed that the Mombasa-Road-based firm was forced to outsource from a company based in India for the exam papers to be printed in a hurry to meet the deadlines.
“We are also aware that the UK firm declined to provide codes to the many layers of security that had been encrypted to safeguard the integrity of national exams. We believe this process is responsible for the disaster witnessed in the KCPE results,” Raila pointed out.
Raila also explained that the contract for relaying results to the public was awarded to another company on short notice, hence jeopardizing the entire process.
He noted that the local company lacked the capacity to provide the services and hence caused the delay and errors witnessed after the release of the exams.
“Grades in science, social studies, and religious studies were truncated. The rollout saw KCPE candidates get graded in subjects they never sat for. The system deployed could not produce the plus and minus signs; what a shame,” he remarked.
Following the revelations, Raila wrote to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and twelve other bodies over the 2023 KCPE Results.
The former Premier observed that Kenyan children will be affected if the national examinations start being questioned.
“We have taken this step out of a firm belief that once we allow education and exam systems to be caught up in a tender war then we have no country to talk about. It is a universally accepted principle that a collapse of education is the collapse of a nation,” said Raila.
“We will be subjecting our children to ridiculed diminished employment especially overseas and admission opportunities in the region and abroad if we allow the integrity of exams and certifications to be questionable and the truth is that these are being questioned,” he added.