The top student in the just-released 2020 KCSE results was too nervous to eat when Education CS Prof George Magoha was announcing the exam results in a live television broadcast on Monday.

Simiyu Robinson Wanjala, who completed his secondary education at Murang’a High School, said he did not expect to be the country’s top performer.

“I was nervous and tried to avoid the TV as much as possible. We were having lunch with my family but I could not eat. When CS Magoha mentioned my name, I rushed to the TV to check if it was a mistake…I was elated and filled with tears of joy,” Simiyu told Citizen TV.

Simiyu Robinson attributed his exemplary performance to God and hard work. He noted that after the Covid-19 pandemic struck the country, he experienced difficulties accessing academic materials online but he kept the faith.

“There were a lot of challenges, especially in Form Four. When corona came, I prayed to God and asked him to repay me for all the hard work I had put in,” he said.

Adding: “The experience through the first year was tough but I thank the school. There are quite many issues when accessing education online.”

Simiyu’s father, Mr Wanjala, described his son as focused and hardworking.

“Robin has been a very focused boy fresh from Primary. He came from Gachie Primary all the way to Murang’a High School. Robin was so focused on what he wanted to achieve,” said the proud father who was smiling from ear to ear.

“Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, my son has done exceptionally well, and we are very excited as a family,” Wanjala said, adding that although he expected his son to be in the top ten, he did not expect him to be the top performer.

Simiyu’s mother, on the other hand, said she expected him to be the best performer.

“I had prayed to God for my son when the results were being announced, and I knew he would be announced as the top candidate,” she said.

Simiyu Robinson Wanjala is eyeing a career in medicine as a surgeon before later specialising in cancer treatment and management.

“I chose engineering and medicine, and I now hope to study medicine at the University of Nairobi,” Robinson said.

His parting shot? “My advice to everyone is to stick to their dream. Let no one tell them it is impossible. Continue working and pray to God,” he said.