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Girl who wrote painful letter to Uhuru over fee arrears back in class

By Amina Wako November 18th, 2020 2 min read

Philomena Mutheu, an orphaned girl who wrote a letter to President Uhuru Kenyatta asking for help is finally back in school.

On Tuesday, the passionate letter written by Mutheu a form four student at St Mary’s School Kithangaini trended on social media attracting wide attention.

In her letter, the 17- year-old-girl pleaded with the president to help her clear her school fees after she was sent home.

She also narrated how her suffering had plunged her into depression and a lot of pain.

“Am not in school, I was sent home a week ago due to unpaid school fees and other basic needs. Am always top ten in class, I have nobody to assist me, this has led to a lot of stress and depression,” part of the letter that trended on social media on Tuesday read.

However, Nairobi News can now authoritatively confirm that Mutheu is back in school after well-wishers sorted part of the fee arrears through, Alex Matheka, a teacher at the school.

According to Mr Matheka, Mutheu’s school fees was before being catered for by an NGO in Embakasi.

However, at the time the girl was sent home, the NGO had been unable to give her the needed money.

“They NGO said they did not have the money and Mutheu decided to write the letter. When we learnt about what transpired with the NGO we decided to recall her back to school, and we find ways,” Mr Matheka told Nairobi News.

Matheu went back to school and people who had received her letter started sending in money that offset part of her fee balance.

The letter however surfaced online on Tuesday and, according to the teacher, as of Tuesday evening, close to Sh30,000 had been sent to help the girl.

Machakos governor Alfred Mutua also pledged to help Mutheu after Kenyans on social media tagged him in the trending conversation.

Mr Mutua said Mutheu’s pain is relatable to him since he had to drop out of school during his time due to school fees arrears. 

“I will personally ensure Philomena is back in school and gets to sit for her exams. Although secondary education is NOT devolved, I will ensure she is fine. Like we quietly & privately do for many students in Kenya, Lillian & I will support her & others in our own private capacities. I am who I am because of the support I received, so this is personal to me,” Mutua said.

The county boss further said that Mutheu’s case had highlighted the plight of many poor students in the country who are supposed to benefit from ‘Free’ primary and secondary education.

“This courageous girl has highlighted the plight of many poor students in all counties all over Kenya where we are supposed to have“free” primary and secondary school. I suspect others in her school have also been sent home. Kenya needs to start AFRESH where all are given a chance,” Mutua wrote.