DOUBLE PUNISHMENT FOR STUDENTS, FREEDOM FOR STAFF.

What is it you will be doing the whole of this week? All some of us will do is just revise for the finals and not much else. Exams are only a week away. If you are like many students, you’ve probably been waiting for the last minute to start serious revision. Sometimes it is not waiting actually, we just procrastinate and before we know it the finals are upon us. Now, at the last minute, a lot of students will be struggling to muster their self-control to avoid watching that movie, football match, or the latest episode of their favorite series so they can finally spend some quality time with their books. Unfortunately for them, that self-control is weak due to months of disuse, thus, they inevitably end up giving in to their impulses. Poof! There goes another one or two irrecoverable hours which could have been used for much needed revision. But no one is in campus because of how dumb, foolish, or disorganized they were in high school, so in the end everyone passes or fails to their expectations. Rarely do you hear a student complain that they didn’t see that supp coming. Everyone has a plan of how they are going to pass. However, there is another group whose plans might have gotten derailed by the latest developments in campus. You know which group am talking about, those who have a disciplinary committee hearing this week and then exams next week. I do not know how they’ll be able to focus with the weight of the possible repercussions hanging above them.
Our sympathy is useless to them for now; the only thing that can help them is to man up. Face your problems head on, because nothing short will bring anyone any relief. Remember that it is your choices which brought you here. Which choices you ask? Well, aren’t you the one who ticked whatever course you are taking and specifically indicate that you wanted to study in Kimathi? Like Carson said, choices have consequences indeed. Therefore, understand that even the choices you will be making within the week are bound to have more consequences. It’s entirely up to you to anticipate those consequences so you can make the right choices. Up to now we do not know the real agenda of this ‘Student Disciplinary Committee’, as they called it in their letters. They want us to believe that it has been set up to deal with those who ‘participated in the student unrest’ in October. But I don’t buy that. First, did the university not dispense a collective punishment by sending everyone home for two weeks and charging each five hundred on top? Why then this inexplicable need to single out a few students out of the many who participated in the unrest? Second, how is Morris’ case proceeding? Why are we not hearing more of it?
The intrigues of politics are lost on me. As such, I don’t follow politics or national matters as closely as I do my hobbies. Luckily, most of my classmates are fanatics of politics with deep rooted loyalties to certain parties or individuals. It is they who keep me updated on what is happening on the national scene. There’s one thing commonly observed amongst them as well as by many commentators on political matters. This is the use of one scandal to cover up or distract attention from another.  Could this be what is happening here? Because if that’s the case then, I have to say, this is an ingenious maneuver with manifold benefits. For one, the students begin discussing the disciplinary cases and forget all about Morris and the circumstances leading to his death. Secondly, it instills even more fear in those who would be witnesses so that they never think of testifying. Thirdly, the university gets a chance to squeeze a few more bucks from unfortunate students by laying the brunt of the blame of the entire unrest on them, and fining them whatever amount the it desires. Fourth, the university manages to weed out any unwanted ‘troublemakers’ by suspending them. The list goes on. There are many ways the university could benefit from the hearings.
However, a more crucial question arises from all these efforts by the university to make sure that those who do wrong are punished. Where is the ‘Staff Disciplinary Committee’? Whom does its membership comprise? I will be excessively stupid today and blatantly state my audacious opinion: I think that at least as many wrongs are perpetrated by members of staff as by students. But the members of staff are much luckier and get off easy most of the time. We watch and let it happen because, well, who has the time to file and follow up official complaints? In the end, one only ends up being sent from one office to the other and asked to bring this or that proof which usually no one has. Nevertheless, there is one member of staff (maybe he has been fired since, but I doubt) who I wish won’t go free so easy. I am talking, of course, of the one and only Muiruri. This is the reason I am asking whether there has been a committee set up to make sure that Morris gets justice. It is also the reason I ask whether the same committee will always be there to make sure that members of staff stay in line. Discipline is a fundamental requisite for achieving whatever goals are set either by an individual or a group. The goals of this university require the collaborated efforts of both students and staff. That’s why it is unreasonable to discipline the students while the staff is similarly undisciplined.
Whatever happens in those disciplinary hearings, I hope the administration will be as thorough in dealing with Morris’ death as it is proving to be in dealing with the unrest. If sending everyone home, then collectively charging each of them five hundred shillings is not enough disciplinary action for the unrest, then firing a few employees cannot be enough justice for the kind of negligence that culminated in the death of a student. Can you believe they actually charged the nun in School of Business the five hundred, as if she could’ve destroyed anything.  That’s how dedicated the school was to recovering all and any losses.  I will refrain from passing a judgement on what does or doesn’t qualify to be suitable justice for Morris. But I know we all have a few ideas.  The university already took care of its financial losses,  and even undertook advertising to restore its public image. And now with this disciplinary hearing, it is tying up all the loose ends.  What did Morris’ parents get apart from a body in a coffin and a condolences message though? You said it,  nothing! But I know what the admin might say,  “That is a police case. Investigations are underway. ” Are they? Where’s the accused in the meantime? As the institution in whose employ he was when the accident occurred, what are you doing to help the parents get some relief? Don’t mind answering that, good sirs and madams within the administration, it’s rhetorical. We all understand a conflict of interest when we see it. And here there’d a major conflict of interest if you were to raise a finger to aid Morris’ parents.

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