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Maseno School under probe over sodomy claims

Police and the Ministry of Education are investigating claims that a student at Maseno School was sexually molested by senior students.

This comes after a disturbing story trending on social media in which the boy’s sister claims that her brother was sodomised by three Form three and Form Four students and that the school has taken no action.

The 16-year-old orphan is in Form One sponsored by Equity Bank’s Wings to Fly Foundation.

The claims have been supported by the student’s guardian. He said the student was sodomised on January 12 and is currently undergoing treatment.

“Not only was the boy beaten, but he was also sodomised. We took him to Maseno Mission Hospital where he was treated before reporting to Maseno Police Station on January 24. I have all the documents,” said the guardian.

However, Kisumu West Officer Commanding Police Division (OCPD) Wilston Mwakio on Thursday said the boy had only reported that he was beaten.

“He reported that he was molested at night. Molestation is a general term, so when the officer recording the statement asked whether he was beaten he affirmed. The officer took the case as assault,” said the OCPD.

He said the guardian was asked to report the case at the crimes office then proceed to the hospital for assessment before obtaining a P3 form.

SEEKING TRANSFER

“But the parent took the child and left,” he said. “We have no facts up to now on the issue of sodomy.”

“Had he reported to us that it was a case of sodomy, we could not have allowed him to go alone. He would be accompanied by an officer,” said the officer.

“A statement at the station’s occurrence book reads in part: “… was molested by the school captain. On 18/1/2018 he was taken to Maseno Mission Hospital. It was reported but the school administration has taken no action. Case was referred to the office of gender and education.”

The OCPD said they were still waiting for the complainant to return and write another statement.

“Without a proper statement there is no case and we cannot just proceed based on allegations,” he said.

But the guardian, who is now in Meru with the child, said they had categorically mentioned the issue of sodomy while recording the statement.

“We gave the full information but we are needed to write a new statement. We would wish to but going back is an extra cost and yet the boy also needs treatment fees,” said the distraught guardian.

He said they were seeking to transfer the boy if Equity Bank accepts their plea to continue sponsoring him in another school.

INVESTIGATION

“The student said he was not the only one molested. Some others are suffering the same way. And we have no reason to lie because we do not draw any benefit from it. If anything, the whole ordeal is costly,” said the guardian on phone.

At the police station, an investigator said they are still investigating another case of sodomy which was reported last year by a student from the same school.

Kisumu County director of Education Sabina Arori said she had dispatched five officers to investigate the matter at Maseno School.

Our efforts to interview the school principal, Mr Paul Otula, were thwarted after the watchman claimed he was under instructions not to allow the media into the school.

Mr Otula told Nation by phone that he could not respond to the issue since it was being investigated by the ministry officers.

“If you are seeking information about that matter, please get it from the District Education Officer who is currently handling the matter,” said Mr Otula.

The guardian claims that the boy had approached the deputy principal with the matter but he referred him to the school captain.

“The school has given prefects too much power and that is where problems comes in. Since the molestation was done by a prefect, there was no way our child could report to them,” said the guardian.