Booze for law exam markers sparks fury

Drinks array featured in a tender for venue where marking will be done for two weeks

In Summary

• The drinks include cocktails, assorted beers, wines, whiskeys and other alcohol and liqueurs.

• CLE seeks well-appointed venue outside Nairobi for 81 men and women who will be marking examinations. 


Sample of alcohol bottles in a liquor shop
Sample of alcohol bottles in a liquor shop

Do you want your Advocates Training exam marked by men and women with lots of free booze to ease their work? What if they are intoxicated?

That's what angry law students want to know.

The Council of Legal Education sparked outrage among law students after it ordered an extensive alcohol menu for examiners who will be marking Advocates Training Programme examinations for two weeks starting May 2.

CLE was forced to pull down a tender notice detailing the order amid protest by students who questioned the rationale for plenty of alcohol. 

Some students took their grievances to social media, saying there could be a connection between the hospitality extended to the examiners and the mass failures at Kenya School of Law.

“Sometimes a student gets 47 marks and upon remarking, it changes to 64 marks. The drunk examiners could be the reason,”  Eric Muriuki said.

“The Employment act does not permit people to be inebriated on the job, Why are these people drinking at work?” he asked.

They want the CLE to come clean on the tender notice.

The council will host 81 people for the marking, hence sought a conference facility outside Nairobi with full accommodation, food, drinks, hopefully a gym and sports facilities.

They will be marking the April ATP (Attorney for Plaintiff) exams.

The tender notice number CLE /04/2020-2021, obtained by the Star spells out the terms for full board.

Drinks are to include cocktails, assorted beers, creams, red and white wines, whiskeys, vodkas and gins.

The venue should also have proper lighting and furniture for exam marking.

CLE wants an environment conducing to exam marking, so it's looking for a place with few interruptions outside the capital.

It also wants a well-secured room for safe storage of examination scripts, a place with 81 standard single rooms and a marking hall for 12 workstations.

Among elements to be evaluated are whether the venue has sporting facilities, a gym, swimming pool and marking hall that can accommodate 12 workstations.

Among elements to be evaluated is whether the venue has sporting facilities like gymnasium, swimming pool, and fields for various games.

The venue must comply with all Covid-10 protocols, included fitted hand washing and sanitiser. There must be thermoguns for screening, the place must be fumigated and there must be a standby medical officer or ambulance.

At the same time, there is a hue and cry over a plan by the CLE to put 3,500 students together - spaced, of course - for exams to begin next Tuesday.

Among the concerns is that the council has remained mute on venues where the exams would be administered and the candidates who are supposed to participate.

The council is required to publish in the Kenya Gazette the details of venues and list of candidates 14 days to the examination date. 

“We are concerned that there are only five days remaining and they (the council) are mute on venues and candidates,” a student told the Star in confidence.

(Edited by V. Graham)