Embakasi East Member of Parliament on Tuesday, March 14, led representatives of over 3,000 law graduates in protesting against the refusal of the Kenya School of Law (KLS) to admit graduates with less than grade B in Kiswahili or English.
Speaking outside the Milimani Law Courts, the lawmaker highlighted the plight of the graduates whom he noted were left stranded and unable to pursue their careers without the prerequisite of a diploma from KSL.
He criticised the KSL for discriminating against the students over their performance in Kiswahili and English despite having excelled in other subjects.
“These students have nowhere to go. From 2015 to date they have been pursuing justice for education but with no success. They have been to various courts but with no help," Babu Owino stated.
Owino argued the students had excelled in their undergraduate studies claiming that some of them had attained first-class honours in the degree programmes.
The vocal legislator vowed to lead in nationwide demonstrations should the government fail to act on the plight of students pending a Supreme Court determination of a petition filed by the graduates.
”KSL (Kenyan School of Law) is not ready to admit them because of certain requirements. KSL states that for you to be admitted to practice you must have scored a B plain in English and B plain in Kiswahili.
“We are gifted differently in other subjects. These students scored grades which qualify them to join the university to study law. But KSL is saying that even that degree is useless," Babu Owino noted.
Susan Muchiri, one of the affected graduates, called out the KSL for what she called a lack of clarity on the threshold of qualifying for admission to the school of law.
She explained how her plans to progress with her career after graduating in 2021 were thwarted by the denial to join the KLS.
According to her, the requirements set by the KSL were contradictory to other laws set to govern higher education in Kenya.
"We have attained our diplomas in institutions regulated by the council of legal education, and we proceeded to earn degrees in the same institutions where we graduated with LLBs (Bachelor of Laws) but Kenya School of Law is telling that is not enough," she lamented.
Other students who spoke in the presser lamented the constraints they experienced during the course of their studies only to be upset by the failure to make the cut for the qualifications of becoming an advocate.
Regulations set by the Kenya School of Law stipulate that one must have attained a minimum of grade B (plain) in English Language or Kiswahili and a mean grade of C (plus) in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination or its equivalent to qualify for the Advocates Training Programme.
The University of Nairobi and Strathmore University have both set the cap for entry requirement of joining law schools to an aggregate of at least a B mean grade, with a B in English or Swahili in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE).