Jubilee Promised Tablets Sold Cheaply in Uganda Market

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto and CS Joe Mucheru with pupils of Catholic Primary School in Wajir inspecting the implementation of the Digital Literacy Programme(DLP) on May 20, 2016.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto and CS Joe Mucheru with pupils of Catholic Primary School in Wajir inspecting the implementation of the Digital Literacy Programme(DLP) on May 20, 2016.
    PSCU
  • Personal computers distributed to schools across the country as part of the Jubilee government free laptop project are being sold in Uganda, trading at nearly Ksh4,087 (150,000 UGX). 

    The seller running a Facebook advertisement page claimed that he was based in Kampala, Uganda. 

    A spot check by Kenyans.co.ke revealed that some of the tablets were being sold by another trader for as low as Ksh3,773. 

    This price was captured in the comment section where a buyer was introducing other customers to his supplier, arguing that he bargained for the price listed. 

    Some of the Digital Literacy Programme (DLP) tablets are being sold on a social media group in Kampala, Uganda.
    Some of the Digital Literacy Programme (DLP) tablets are being sold on a social media group in Kampala, Uganda.
    Courtesy

    Kenyans.co.ke reached out to Government Spokesperson Col (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna who remarked that the State was not privy to the illegal trade.

    "We are not aware of the matter as it has bot brought to our attention. I, therefore, cannot comment on the issue," Oguna responded but assured that the government will launch an investigation after assessing the page. 

    Kenyans.co.ke also reached out to the trader's numbers posted on the advertisement, but both SIM cards were offline.

    In 2021, former Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), Secretary-General, Wilson Sossion, termed the laptop project (The Digital Literacy Programme - DLP) a scam.

    Sossion opined that the flagship project in the education sector was used to embezzle billions from the taxpayers.

    DLP was initiated by the government as it aimed to integrate the use of technologies in all public primary schools from Class One.

    The Ministry of Information, Communication, and Technology (ICT) was allocated Ksh53.2 billion in the 2013/2014 budget for acquiring over 1,350,000 laptops for the project.

    About 1,169,000 devices were distributed to 21,638 public primary schools countrywide and about 91,000 teachers were trained on how to use the new technology for teaching and learning.

    However, a report presented in the Parliament in 2019 revealed the extent to which the project failed.

    The report tabled by the Ministry of Education detailed that the program crumpled as teachers were not sufficiently trained.

    A teacher at Butere Primary School in Kakamega County introduces her pupils to digital tablets on May 3, 2016
    A teacher at Butere Primary School in Kakamega County introduces her pupils to digital tablets on May 3, 2016
    File

    “Can the government account to us how much one tablet costs. Because over the years, if they can only deliver one million tablets, most of them are faulty and many schools are unable to maintain the electricity cost of recharging them and learners are unable to use them and teachers have no skills to use them, then what are we talking about? That is the fact,” Sossion stated.

    In 2019, Dr Kipronoh Rono, the Director of Information Communication Technology Authority Programmes and Standards, informed the Senate and National Assembly's ICT committee that the government had invested Ksh27 billion in the DLP as of that point.

    illegal scam