Quorum hitch hampers probe into girl’s death in school

A petition in which a parent has asked the National Assembly to help him get answers on the circumstances under which his daughter died in school failed to kick off on Tuesday owing to a quorum hitch in the committee.

Mr Josephat Namatsi says Tracy Sylvia, a 15-year-old Form Three student at Moi High School Kabarak in Nakuru, died on January 14, barely a week after schools opened for the first term.

A post-mortem report shows she died of malaria, but reports from the school’s clinic show she was being treated for a bacterial infection.

FORUM CALLED OFF

Mr Namatsi’s attempts to get answers from the school and the ministry of Education have been unsuccessful, forcing him to petition MPs through Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali.

But the MPs’ forum was called off after only three members showed up.

READ: How did my child die in school? father asks MPs

Accompanied by the girl’s father, Mr Washiali arrived at the meeting room and sat for one-and-a-half hours before Kajiado Woman Representative Mary Seneta decided to call off the meeting for lack of a quorum.

Apart from Ms Seneta, the only other Member was Malava MP Malulu Injendi.

REQUIRES ATTENTION

“I am sorry that this had to happen. It’s very sad because this matter requires our attention as parents. We plead with the petitioner to bear with us because, as you know, members are busy campaigning in their constituencies,” she said.

The MP assured the petitioner that the clerk of the committee, in consultation with the chairman, will communicate on the way forward.

Mr Washiali requested the committee to try to have the petition discussed before the House adjourns Thursday saying the matter is urgent and affects parents who have their children in boarding schools.

HOUSE ADJOURNS

“If we shall not have the meeting before the House adjourns then we plead with the committee to communicate to us on the way forward on how to pursue justice on this loss,” Mr Washiali said.

Among the issues Tracy’s father wants the committee to address is why the school did not allow his daughter to seek treatment at a proper hospital yet she had medical insurance.

He also wants to know why the school did not inform him when Tracy fell seriously ill and why she was told to attend lessons even when she was too weak.

The school, he said, did not call him by phone when the decision was made to take her to a Nakuru hospital, where she died.

Even after she died, it is Evans Sunrise Hospital that called him, not the school.

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