Nakuru slum boy Isaac Mugambi beats all odds to emerge top in KCSE

Isaac Mugambi

Isaac Mugambi (centre) of Langa Langa Secondary School in Nakuru City is carried by jubilant teachers at the school on January 20, 2023. He scored grade A of 84 points in 2022 KCSE 

Photo credit: Francis Mureithi | Nation Media Group

When Isaac Mugambi of Langalanga Secondary School in Nakuru City wrote his last KCSE paper, Physics paper 3, he walked to the Principal's office and delivered a letter.

The Principal Rufina Mutegi Nkonge was surprised since rarely do Form Four students pass by her office to bid her goodbye after completing their secondary school studies.

In his one-page letter, Mugambi wrote: “Thank you so much madam Principal for your support. Not once, not twice have you gone out of your way to see that I become somebody in the future. I know I have done my best in this KCSE and I will make you proud. I pray to God I become successful so that I can remember you for the rest of my life.”

Mugambi then attached Sh100 to the letter and handed it over to Ms Nkonge and bid her goodbye.

“I wanted to show her my love for the good things she has done for me. I know Sh100 is little but to me, its value is as big as her heart,” said Mugambi.

When Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu announced the KCSE results on Friday, Ms Nkonge was perhaps the happiest principal in Kenya today.

Mugambi did not disappoint and emerged as the top student with a grade A of 84 points despite learning in a school whose catchment is the slums of Nakuru City namely Flamingo, Kimathi, Kivumbini, Kwa Rhonda, Bondeni, Kivumbini and Kaloleni.

The 19-year-old Mugambi scored A in English, Mathematics, Kiswahili, Biology, Physics, CRE, Chemistry and Geography.

This is the highest ever grade in KCSE since the inception of the school in 1984

The last time the school produced a student with a Grade A of 83 points was in 2018.

The sterling results saw Mugambi beat thousands of students in established national schools like Nakuru Boys, Nakuru Girls, Moi Forces Academy Lanet, Anestar Boys, Bahati Girls, and the top private school in the region Moi High School Kabarak among others

“I was shocked by the results. I was not even aware that the results were being announced on television. I sent a text message and when I saw the results I couldn’t believe my eyes. All subjects were A and I thank God,” said Mugambi.

He added: “I thank God for these results. I didn’t expect to score these grades. God works in mysterious ways. I thank my teachers and the principal. She was my pillar in the school. Getting a grade A in a day school like Langalanga required maximum dedication and hard work.”

“I underwent many challenges. I missed some textbooks but Ms Nkonge supported me. Langalanga is a day school and I used to wake up at 4am to prepare and go to school,” he said.

He also thanked Pastor Kaberere of Chrisco Church for paying his school fees in Form Three and Four.

“My dreams of pursuing medicine at the University of Nairobi are now valid. I thank my parents for encouraging me while I was writing my KCSE tests. My God bless them abundantly,” said Mugambi.

Mugambi arrived at the school on a boda boda and was received with song and dance by the teachers.

“Mugambi comes from a humble background but because this school has dedicated teachers, we have produced the top candidate in South Rift Valley,” said Ms Nkonge.

She added: “The secret of success at Langalanga Secondary School is discipline, commitment and fear of the Lord. That is why today we are celebrating Isaac Mugambi’s stellar performance.”


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