Kenya: Parents Pull Girls from Nairobi School after Rapes

An activist puts a message on the sign board at the main entrance of Moi Girls School Nairobi, a prestigious government boarding school in Nairobi, Kenya, June 4, 2018, during a protest against alleged rape of three girls at the school.

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NAIROBI —
In Nairobi, parents stormed a girls boarding school on Monday and took away their children, accusing administrators of failing to protect the students. The incident was a reaction to the rape of three girls Friday at the school. Kenyan police are investigating, and parliament is getting involved.

The parliamentary committee tasked to look into education spent much of Wednesday at Moi Girls in Nairobi, where three girls were reportedly raped Friday.

The committee was on a mission to understand how the rapes happened, and who has information that could help police.

The pressing issue for the committee was – what time did the rape occur and did anyone hear anything?

A lawmaker said, “A lot is being reported around 5:00. Now in the imagination of everybody and the school, what time do you think this incident happened, because everybody is talking about 5-5:08 and by that time the girl was dressed, sited on a bed. What time could it have occurred at night?”

According to the school officials, there is just one female guard watching the girls dormitory. The guard said she heard nothing out of the ordinary at the time of the rapes.

One official told the committee the first sound the guard heard was the students getting ready for their classes on Saturday morning.

“She heard the girls noise at around 5:00 and they were waking up to freshen up. She opened the gate for the girls to fetch water and after that, she met the matron and the matron is the one who narrated the story of what happened at night,” said the official.

Minister of Education Amina Mohamed said Tuesday the security systems failed the students.

“It has been established that various security gaps and lapses existed at the school by the time of the reported defilement incident. To address this the ministry has ordered an overhaul of the entire security system, including the replacement of all security agents,” said Mohamed.

The minister also dissolved the board of management and parent association of the school.

Police have taken the DNA samples of all the male teachers, relatives, and workers of the school to establish who was behind the rape. Results of the tests are expected next week.

Meanwhile, the government has deployed police officers at the school in an effort to assure parents the premises are safe. Students are expected to return this Sunday.