A 15-year-old schoolgirl who broke down while begging for school fees in Nairobi CBD has received multiple offers from well-wishers who were touched by her plight.
On Wednesday, September 15, Mellan Njeri Njuguna, a Form Two student at Kihumbu-ini Secondary School in Murang’a County told the local dailies that she was sent home on September 10 after her mother failed to raise her school fees.
The minor was spotted walking along Langata Road, Parliament Road, Processional Way, Kenyatta Avenue and Moi Avenue with a placard, requesting well-wishers to offset her Ksh29,177 fee arrear.
Nominated Women Representative, Millicent Omanga, was the first to offer aid to the stranded minor before multiple other well-wishers stepped forward.
“This is very heartbreaking! As a mother, it has brought me down to my knees. I am left wondering, is it just rhetoric when the Ministry of Education directs that no student should be chased away from school because of school fees?
“A fee balance of Ksh29,177 can easily be sorted by the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) and the Constituency Development Fund (CDF). I am looking for this girl. I am going to pay for her school fees, buy her shoes and give general support,” Omanga pledged and asked for Njeri’s parent’s numbers.
Former Nairobi Governor, Mike Sonko, also promised to support the teenager but on one condition. Sonko asked for the school’s pay bill or account number rather than the parent’s personal mobile phone number.
“In as much as we always like chipping in to help in such needy cases, we ought to investigate why parents use personal numbers rather than the school.
“I have witnessed many fake cases in my philanthropy. However, I have the said amount (Ksh29,177) in my mobile money account but I need the school’s pay bill. I will also top up additional pocket money,” Sonko stated via his social media pages.
Njeri’s mother, Anne Wangechi Mureithi confirmed that the daughter is her firstborn and a sibling to three others, adding that she (Wangechi) is a casual labourer and the sole breadwinner of the family.
The school confirmed that Njeri was sent home for school fees, but was among many others who were asked to offset their arrears.
Cases of school fees fraud are common across the country. More recently, a Form 1 student was forced to drop out of school after she was reported to have lied to secure aid from well-wishers.
Maureen Chepngeno, who was set to join St Michael’s Girl High School in Nakuru was accused of lying to donors that she was an orphan.
Area Assistant Chief Samson Ng’etich discovered that Chepngeno’s parents were alive and resided in Nakuru County. This was after well-wishers had raised her school fees and funds for her personal emoluments.