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Textbooks prices go up as schools open for first term

31 December 2015, 13:58 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi - Parents will be forced to dig deep into their pockets in purchasing textbooks for their children from January, 2016 after publishers announced 11 to 15% price increase on books.

The Kenya Association of Publishers Chairman, David Waweru said high cost of publishing textbooks and weakened Kenyan shilling to the dollar has forced them to raise prices for both Primary and Secondary schools books.

"The cost of publishing has gone up. Last year, a dollar cost about KES 86 but now a dollar costs KES 102 yet we don't produce our own printing papers instead we import all of them," said Waweru.

The increase in textbooks prices only affects 5% equivalent to about 250 books used in high schools and primary schools while price of the remaining 95%, equivalent to about 3 750 books, will remain the same.

Read Also: Over 200 000 KCPE candidates might not join Secondary School

Waweru said his Association agreed with the government on the increased costs and that it has already approved the proposed new prices in the official Orange Book.

However, the Association of Textbooks Sellers Chairman, Arthur Kamau raised concern that the proposed price increase on books will make it difficult for parents to buy books for their children and thus affect standards of education.

"Parents have been overburdened but we have been demanding VAT imposed on books raising their prices by 16% be removed by the government for parents buy textbooks for their children at affordable prices," said Kamau.

Schools will reopen from January 4, 2016 although teachers' unions; KNUT and KUPPET, had threatened that teachers will not report to work until their employer, TSC, increases their salaries as ordered by the court.

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