St. Augustine headmistress to face murder charges over school bus tragedy

The St. Augustine bus at the scene of the accident. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Mombasa, KENYA: St. Augustine Preparatory school’s headmistress is expected to appear before a Mombasa court on Monday, to face murder charges over the death of a pupil who was crushed to death by the school’s bus.

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has ordered the arrest of Ms Serah Kessi through Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Alexander Muteti, and also wants murder charges levelled against her.

In a letter on Saturday, Mr Muteti directed the Mombasa Criminal Investigations Officer to appoint a senior officer to lead investigations into the Friday incident.

“We have directed the immediate arrest of the school principal, the bursar, bus driver, the school mechanic and the bus driver’s helper who was on board.We shall move to court tomorrow (Monday),” Mr Muteti said in a statement.

Jeremy Masila,6, was on Friday morning run over by the back wheels of the bus when he fell down through an opening on the floor of the bus.

The incident raised a major uproar among parents in Mombasa who expressed disappointment over how their children were being handled in  school buses.

Some of the parents who spoke to Baraka FM, said there was a lot of negligence from school administrators when it came to children’s safety.

” You pay over 1500 for transport and you find 4 to 5 kids are being forced to sit on one seat. it’s quite unfortunate that this had to happen but fortunately we hope the authorities will help sought this matter once and for all.” Said Andrew Kazungu.

Meanwhile, NTSA has impounded the St. Augustine bus which is set to undergo a structural inspection as per the KS372 Standards that took effect from May 22, 2017.

According to NTSA, the plate of the bus was corroded and covered with a PVC carpet hence covered the corroded areas.

The school will also  be charged for knowing that parts of the vehicle were not maintained hence endangering the lives of persons traveling within it contrary to Section 55 (1) of the Traffic Act Read.

READ MORE: Pupil crushed to death by school bus in Mombasa