Corporal punishment may be reintroduced in Kenyan schools if plans by MPs are successful. The lawmakers are planning to introduce a bill in Parliament that will see a return of caning of indisciplined students following unrest in schools across the country.
In recent weeks, more than 40 schools have been set ablaze leading to the indefinite closure of many.
As a result, National Assembly Deputy Minority Whip Chris Wamalwa says MPs are seriously thinking about re-introducing caning as a disciplinary measure in schools to avert the unrest.
“These cases of burning dormitories in schools should come to an end and the only way of stopping it is by re-introducing caning in schools.
“When corporal punishment was there during our time, such cases were not there,” said the MP.
The Kiminini MP further attributed cases of burning schools to lack of discipline, adding that the vice can be eradicated by corporal punishment.
“Burning of schools is a criminal offence and those found should be treated as criminals and the law is very clear on what to do with such criminals.
“We don’t condone indiscipline in schools,” said Wamalwa.
Wamalwa was speaking on Tuesday at St Eliza’s Girls’ Secondary School Kabichbich, in West Pokot County, to mark the Catholic World Education Day.
Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo has also called for the return of corporal punishment for students saying it is the high time that the Children’s Act, which was enacted in 2001 to outlaw corporal punishment, is revoked in order to give teachers better control over their students.
We must repeal the Children’s Act to ensure that discipline can get back to where it was before. Other than engaging our students, it is important to have a more effective way or system of disciplining the students,” said the MP last week.
“If a student does something bad they must be caned. People were caned before. I am an advocate of giving teachers the power to discipline. Let us get back corporal punishment. Let us as a society stop treating our kids like eggs and ensure that we have values that they must grow up knowing,” he said.