Monday, 22 January 2018 04:00

Protecting Public Schools in Kenya

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The ShuleYangu secretariat paid the Council of Governors secretariat a courtesy visit to discuss a partnership between County Governments and the ShuleYangu initiative. ShuleYangu Alliance is a national network of likeminded stakeholder from civic, government and private sector working to ensure the “Protection of schools against illegal land grabs, support government to issue title deeds to public schools and support communities to own their schools.”
The ShuleYangu campaign brings together stakeholders from Government, Public and Private sector to accelerate the protection of public school land in all the 47 counties. The Campaign seeks to inspire active citizenship and build broad-based alliances with policy makers, leaders and citizens in securing public school land. It further seeks to accelerate the Presidential and National Lands Commission (NLC) directive that all public schools should have title deeds.
The protection of public school land is based on fundamental principles and rights within the constitution of Kenya including the right of children to free and compulsory education - article 53 (b). Further, the constitution underpins the protection of all public land including public school land, stating in article 62 (4) that, “Public land shall not be disposed of or otherwise used except in terms of an Act of parliament specifying the nature and terms of that disposal or use.”
“According to our research out of the 29.404 public schools in Kenya, 83% don’t have titles, 41% are at a risk of encroachment and 14% have reported land contestation cases with the National Land Commission” said Florence, ShuleYangu Campaign Manager. She further pointed out that “As a county we lose up to 750 million yearly in land grabbing court cases. This is money equivalent to secondary tuition for 13,623 students.”
Through the initiative they have managed to have 1330 schools titled and over 30 allotment letters issues in 2017 with support from county governments. They hope to issue an additional 1500 title deeds by mid-2018.
The Campaign is built on an alliance of partners spearheaded by 9 Key Convenors: The National Lands Commission, Elimu Yetu Coalition (EYC), Kenya Alliance for the Advancement of Children Rights (KAACR), Amnesty International, Girl Child Network (GCN), Society for International Development (SID), EACHRights, ANCEFA and Pawa Initiative. The Campaign seeks the Council of Governors to join the convenors with the vision to have counties prioritize titling and auditing of schools through the Education Urban and Lands Committees.

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