By Ben Leshau
Girls in Narok County managed to break the cultural jinx of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), early marriages and rampant teenage pregnancies to outshine boys.
The top candidate in the county Faith Rutto of Blessed Academy scored 430 marks. She aspires to be a neurosurgeon.
The top boy in the county Paul Kerema from the same schools got 425 marks but generally the most candidates with over 400 marks were surprisingly female.
Other female top performers included Sheiza Kamau 414 (Blessed Academy), Deborah Teiya, 415 (Narok County Academy), Naomi Chelim, 408 and Irene Soila 400 all of the same school.
Narok over the years have been synonymous with high girl dropouts.
Rift Valley Regional Coordinator George Natembeya fought fearlessly against FGM to an extent of issuing a directive for girls joining Form One to be inspected if they had undergone the ‘cut’.
Natembeya was irked by the rampant teenage pregnancies which stand at 40 per cent making Narok the leading in the country with FGM being the major contributing factor.
The then Narok County Commissioner linked the escalating teenage pregnancy cases to FGM.
Parents in the county led by the County Parents Association Chairman Joseph Pareiyo said that the fruits of Natembeya’s efforts have been felt.
“We have seen girls excel and even beating boys in this year’s KCPE and we hope they will also do so in the coming KCSE,” said Pareiyo.
A total of 95 percent of pupils who sat their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education(KCPE)in Narok last year have managed to join form one.
Early this year, according to the Ministry of Education, there was 95 per cent transition in all the six sub-counties where Transmara East led in the transition with 99.07 per cent, followed by Transmara West with 98.74 per cent, Narok North 97.1 per cent, Narok East with 95.57 per cent and Narok South last 89.25.
“I want to be a role model to all girls in my county and motivate more parents to consider educating a girl just like they do to the boy,” said Deborah Teiya, who scored 408 marks and hopes to be an accountant.