Court awards Sh1.25m to each of 15 pupils killed in Kakamega school stampede
A Kakamega Court has awarded Sh1,250,000 for each of the 15 pupils who were killed during a deadly stampede at Kakamega primary School on February 3, 2020.
The school’s board management, County director of education and the Attorney General who has been sued on behalf of the Ministry of Education will pay for costs and interest in the case at court rates.
In his judgment, Chief Magistrate Linus Kassan said defendants bore 100 percent liability in the case and were jointly and severally liable for minors' deaths.
Also read: Kakamega stampede: police file handed to DPP
The judgment came as relief to parents who lost their children in the incident, which witnesses who testified in court said was triggered by a teacher who came out of a classroom and shouted at the children as they left their classrooms to home at 4.30pm.
The learners were at the time descending the narrow and dark stairway from the four storey building.
The witnesses told the court that children started running in fear, triggering the stampede and trampled on each other, leading to the fatalities.
The magistrate said: “In my view, the school management who are responsible for the care of the minors bear the greatest responsibility of ensuring that they children are safe and free from harm.”
He found the defendants liable for the minors’ fatal injuries at 100 percent liability.
“They ought to have foreseen any danger that might have arisen in case of such an unexpected event being the care takers of the children during the school going hours. For the above reasons, I find and uphold that the defendants are jointly liable for the minors’ fatal injuries at 100 percent liability,”
“The said care and duty was breached, causing the death of the innocent minors,” said the magistrate.
The suit was filed by Ibrahim Kiverenge Ali, Jerusha Kiverenge, Irene Ambundo, Joice Mabuko on behalf of twelve others who lost their children in the stampede.
Witnesses in the case told the court the stairway leading from the storey building were narrow and dark and accused the management of school of being negligent in ensure the care and safety of their children.