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Uhuru’s rib-cracking buddy joins Form One

Whiz kid Dennis Ngaruiya, President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Nakuru rib-cracking buddy, has finally joined Form One.

The head of state kept his promise to take care of Ngaruiya, 15, with State House settling his Form One admission costs.

Ngaruiya famously known as the State House kid in Nakuru reported to Menengai High School on Wednesday, an emotional moment that left his single mother in tears.

“I didn’t know my child could be admitted and study in such a good school like other children,” Ms Damaris Wambui said before she broke down, overwhelmed with joy.

Ngaruiya met President Kenyatta in October 2014 during the Kenya Defence Forces Day celebrations at 3KR Barracks in Lanet, Nakuru. He was then aged 13.

His poem, “Our Father” left the crowd in stitches, including the president. It was a creative poem, with a phrase addressed to the president.

“Though there have been small setbacks in your path, you never cease to build Kenya bwana, ama namna gani?” part of the poem went, after which the reciter broke into an infectious laughter.

The poem, written by his class teacher at Nakuru East Primary, also commended the First Lady for her continuous efforts in promoting good maternal health through her Beyond Zero campaign and the president for his ability to interact freely with the people.

The poem also extolled the president’s simplicity especially when addressing the citizens with his popular phrase, “Ama niaje ndugu zangu?”


Dennis Ngaruiya (left) with other Form One students during an orientation session upon his admission at Menengai High School in Nakuru. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH
Dennis Ngaruiya (left) with other Form One students during an orientation session upon his admission at Menengai High School in Nakuru. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH

It is the same poem that has kept Ngaruiya’s dream of becoming a pilot grow everyday.

His has not been an easy life though. At birth Ngaruiya suffered from meningitis that left him immobile leading to stunted growth.

His mother catered for the family’s needs through weaving sweaters at a local company which only enabled the family to get two meals in a day. His father had abandoned them immediately after Ngaruiya’s birth.

“I struggled to ensure that he went to school at the right age. I carried him to school on my back up to when he was in Standard Two. His legs were too weak for him to walk to school. He grew stronger as days went by,” said Ms Wambui.

After the Nakuru performance, Mr Kenyatta invited Ngaruiya to State House where he visited a year later in 2015. It is here that the president promised to take care of his education.

There were hiccups, however, and at some point, Ms Wambui almost lost hope in ever getting the promise fulfilled.

“When I visited the State House with my son, the president promised to take care of his needs as well as see him through his education but as soon we left, I lost contact with the State House,” she said.

The situation grew worse even as he went ahead to sit for his Kenya Certificate of Primary Education at his Nakuru East Primary School scoring 212 marks.


“I was worried, I didn’t know what to do as the time to join secondary school approached,” she said.

With help of her area Member of Parliament, however, she managed get in touch with the President.

On Wednesday at around midday, Ngaruiya made his entry to Menengai High School where he joined 280 other students admitted to Form One.

At the orientation exercise began an excited Ngaruiya took his position on the front row. His entry caused excitement among his fellow new students.

His mother could not hide her joy. “This is the first time he is leaving home and to be away from me, I feel lonely already,” Ms Wambui.

The school principal Mr David Gweyani said the school would make a special desk for him to ensure that he gets the best environment to study.

“We have made all the arrangements to see that the facilities are favorable to him considering his stature,” said Mr Gweyani.

An enthusiastic Ngaruiya on his first day in secondary school said he looks forward to getting good grades so as to take care of his mother. He also dreams of taking care of the less fortunate after school.

To crown his first day in school, Ngaruiya repeated the special poem he recited to the president when he visited State House. He promised President Kenyatta that he would not let him down in his studies.