The free laptops projectÂ meant to benefit primary schoolsÂ across the country has suffered a setback after incidences of robbery incidents threw the digital literacy programme into disarray.
SourcesÂ indicate that up to four schools in Bungoma County have lost hundreds of the branded tablets and the teacher’s instructional laptops which are allegedly sneaked and sold in neighbouringÂ Uganda.
According to the Standard, one of the laptopsÂ is being used to playÂ music in aÂ busaa club at Bumbo market in Uganda, barely 3km from the Kenyan border.
Tulienge PrimaryÂ in Bungoma lost 47Â laptops on May 4 whileÂ Namawanga FYM Primary lost 64 laptops in August 2017Â afterÂ cutting off part of the roof above the head teacherâ€™s office leaving the school with only 21 tablets.
Mufungu Salvation Army (SA) PrimaryÂ SchoolÂ lost 49 of the 72 tabletsÂ issued by the government in September last year whileÂ Namunyu Primary lost 46 laptops in a similar incident.
Bungoma West Deputy County Commissioner Daniel arap Kurui blamed school management and teachers in the affectedÂ schoolsÂ for carelessness.Â
“After IÂ visited some of theÂ schools, I found out that it was pure carelessness. In oneÂ school, the laptops were stolen from the desks. The government insisted that these laptops be kept in a secured place,”Kurui indicated.
Bungoma Education Director Jacon Mongâ€™are noted that the affectedÂ schoolsÂ have asked for other tablets to allow them to continue with digital lessons.
“We have to give a report to the Ministry of Education, wait for their opinion, and advise the way forward,” the education boss noted.
Kenyan officers are reportedly following the matter withÂ one of the stolen laptops said to have been intercepted by police officers manning the Kenya-Uganda border.