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This is a compilation of Questions from past KCSE, Mocks, Pre/Post-mocks and Internal Exams.

Fathers Of Nations Recent KCSE Excerpt Essay Questions

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Read the Excerpt below and answer the Questions that follow

EXERPTS 1: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

“Ms McKenzie!” he said. “What a pleasant surprise!” He ushered her in. “Please come in.”

“I hope I’m not interrupting anything,” she said. He closed the door then steered her towards a chair.

“Feel at home,” he said.

“And I will.” She sat. “Mother has a question for her boy. How was your day, young one?”

“It was only so- so, “Mother,” he said. “Or, as we say back home, ‘Only small- small.”’

         Mother thinks that’s big-big enough. Are you ready for tomorrow?”

       As ready as I never will be, I guess, Mother.” He went and sat beside her.

   “And do you still think the summit will adopt Way Omega?” 

     Only twelve hours. We can wait.”

  “By the way, guess who I ran into downstairs? Someone by the name Longway. I was tracking down a man they call their guide and thought this fellow might be him. Do you know him?”

Dr Afolabi did not answer.

Well, do you know Mr Longway or not?”

“Yes, Ms McKenzie, I do. You might as well know this now: I am their guide.”


“Promise you will keep that to yourself, Okay?”

“I promise.”

“Apart from Mr Longway , whom you now know, there are four other people I’m working with on the  periphery of the summit as their  guide.  Instead of adopting way Omega, this group wants the summit to adopt Path Alpha.”

  1. What happens before this excerpt.(4mks)
  2. Comment on any three styles in the excerpt. (6mks)
  3. “Feel at home.” He said. (change to reported speech)                          (1mk)
  4. “Are you ready for tomorrow?” what is to happen tomorrow from the rest of the text? (3mks)
  5.  Identify and explain two character traits each of: (4mks)

Dr. Afolabi-

Ms. Fiona mckenzie-

  • What is, “this group” and why does it want the summit to adopt, “ Path Alpha” and not “Way Omega”. (4mks)
  • Give the meaning of these words: (3mks)
  • Steered-
  • Periphery-
  • III  Summit-

Fathers Of Nations Recent KCSE Excerpt Essay Questions

EXERPTS 2: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

            “Tad,” said the cranky passenger as he was settling down in economy class, in a seat next to Dr  Afolabi’s. “Tad Longway,” he added. His voice, deep, lingered on like the boom of a big drum.  He held out a card.

Dr  Afolabi took it.  It said the man was a Director of Special Projects at the Agency for Governance and Development in Africa.  “Pleased to meet you, Mr Longway,”  Dr Afolabi said.  “My name is Abiola Afolabi.  I teach at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria.”

“You gave an excellent keynote address the other day, Dr Afolabi,” said the cranky passenger.  Sparks of earnestness were crossing his eyes, both crystal-green like toy marbles, confirming the compliment was sincere.  “Your keynote address at the Foundation for Democratic rule, I mean.  It was brilliant.”

            “I’m glad you liked it, Mr Longway,” Dr Afolabi said.  His voice had become warm.  “You were there, then, Mr Longway?”

“Yes, but back in the last row.  As a mere spectator, I did not want to be obtrusive.  Anyway, you were superb, Dr Afolabi.  If you don’t mind by adding this, I was more impressed by the points that the audience raised afterwards, during the question –and–answer period.”

            Dr Afolabi felt the praise he had just heard turn into reproach.  “So what were those points, Mr Longway?”  he asked.  His voice was less warm.

“Remember the guy from Grassroots International: short fellow, round of body and outspoken of manner? What was his name?  It’s on the tip on my tongue.”

            “You must mean the fire-eater who kept accusing me of looking for answers where I shouldn’t even look,” Dr Afolabi said.

            “Exactly, that’s our man.  Yes, I thought he was right on point, Dr Afolabi.  He too was unhappy with the present state.”

            “Wait, the present state of what?”


“I don’t understand.”

“No problem:  I’ll spell it out for you.  You see, Dr Afolabi, Africa, in its present state, has two new arrivals: corruption and impunity.  The first is a crime the second protects from punishment, the second is another crime the first rewards with kickbacks.  That is Africa in its present state.  Now can it change?”

“Tell me. Can it?”

“Well, let’s ask the Law of Will.”


“Unless there is will to change, there will be no change.’


  • Place this excerpt in its immediate context.                                                   (4 marks)
  • Discuss one character trait of Dr Afolabi and two of Tad Longway.                    (6 marks)
  • Highlight and illustrate two themes evident in this passage.                         (4 marks)
  • Identify and illustrate two stylistic devices evident in this passage.                       (4marks)
  • (i) Unless there is will to change, there will be no change. (Rewrite using “if”)    (1 mark)

(ii)It’s on the tip of my tongue. (Rewrite beginning: “On…”)                                    (1 mark)

  • Explain the meaning of the following words and expressions as used in the excerpt. (5 marks)
  • Cranky
  • Keynote address
  • Obtrusive
  • On the tip of my tongue
  • Kickbacks

EXERPTS 3: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

What a triumph that already was, his enemy thought. Absence of an answer meant submission. To celebrate this easy victory, the man rocked in his chair back and forth first. Then he spoke again. “Karanja, was there something specific that you came to see me about?”

Again, Professor Kimani did not answer.

Another victory! This time the man tried to celebrate it with a smile, but he killed it. Since his leaving the university, his belly had grown into a ball, big and firm. It should have become handicap. Yet it did not. Was he not a husband

born him a child each? It paid for itself through reproductive success, which it owed to its cause: a soft seat in parliament. He had won the seat in a by-election. Gunmen scaring off pursuers, had killed his predecessor, a swaggering rogue whimsically nicknamed Kazi-kubwa Pesa-dogo,” or „Big-work Small-money‟, while he was wobbling drunkenly out of a bar.

Now there Mr Kazi-kubwa Pesa-dogo‟s successor was, sluggish and groggy like a satiated python with a hangover, in a big office furnished at public expense with black leather chairs and two pretty secretaries

“Karanja, take a seat,” he said, gesturing at a chair. Professor Kimani rejected it. “Keep it!”

“Fine, stand there forever if you like. See if I care. Let me guess: You came to ask why I want to marry Asiya. Am I right?

“You have a nerve, you heap of…”

“Watch your tongue, Karanja. I am not going to warn you about your language again.”

“The word I used was „marry‟. You prefer steal?”

“What good is she to you?” Professor Kimani cursed himself for that wording. He had degraded not only his wife but also himself and, in the same breath, upgraded his foe.

“What good is she to me? Is that what you asked? Because she is much older than I am? Here my answer is: Old is gold.”

Mr Walomu‟s opponents had a different answer: “When a cat gets into a pigeon coop,” they said, “it kills all the pigeons it finds there, not just those it will eat.” Mr Walomu had already eaten three pigeons and now had in his paws a fourth: Asiya. Strewn along his path, lay many others he had killed but not eaten. So who could say for sure that, months hence, Asiya would not become one of those?

Mr Walomu continued. “As for what you call „stealing‟, a professor in Texas says that lots of people do it.” He threw in a Swahili cliché to support his claim. “Na hivyo ndivyo ilivyo.” To help it along, he gave the approximate English equivalent, “And that‟s how the cookie crumbles.”

That was mockery Professor Kimani felt had to reject. “You have three beautiful wives,” he began. This was a silly start, as even he realised. Had he not sounded an envious loser? Nonetheless, he went on. “All of them young.”

“And young they‟ll still be the day I die,” Mr Walomu added. “Karanja, you know the saying: “A real bull dies with green grass in its mouth.”

“Then why do you want to steal my wife? She is old. Not the green grass you want in your mouth.”

a) Describe the events leading up to the happenings in this excerpt. (3 marks)

b) What is the writer‟s view of elected leaders as portrayed in this excerpt? Illustrate your answer. (3 marks)

c) How is Walomu portrayed in the excerpt? (4 marks)

d) Describe the mood of the excerpt. (3 marks)

e) “Why do you want to steal my wife?” (Rewrite in reported speech) (1 mark)

f) Explain what happens immediately after the events in this excerpt. (3 marks)

g) Identify and illustrate one theme brought out in this excerpt. (2 marks)

i Explain the meaning of the following expressions as used in the passage. (3 marks)

(i) whimsically …………………………………………………………………………………

(ii) satiated ……………………………………………………………………………………..

(iii)have a nerve ……………………………………………………………………………….

Fathers Of Nations Recent KCSE Excerpt Essay Questions

EXERPTS 4: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

The door to the bathroom opened. Fiona emerged and started walking but stopped. Her eyes had not adjusted to the darkness in the living room. “Where are you?” she asked.

“Over here” he said. “I have taken a couch in the living room. Go take the bed in the bedroom.” “You’re acting as if you might have a wife,” she said. “Do you?” “No, she divorced me last year.” “Did she?”


“Let’s see now. You studied in America at a marriageable age.” “Let me guess.” “Go ahead.” “She is American.”

“Who? Pamela?”

“Yes it is. And, yes, she is American. Enough about me now. Let’s turn to you. Shouldn’t your name still be Fiona McKenzie?”

“Who told you it might have changed?” She started walking to the bedroom. Her eyes had adjusted to the only light.

“Why was the Liberian Mauler calling you Joy instead?” “It’s local slang for streetwalker.” “He was calling you a streetwalker?”

“Yes, do you want me to draw a picture for you? Where are you from anyway? Mars?” “No, Nigeria. Married?” “Me?”

The phone rang. He rose and answered the landline by the couch. When he ended the call, his mood had darkened.

“What’s the matter?” she asked him. “You seem upset all of a sudden. Who was on the phone?”

“One Chineke Chiamaka,” he said. “This man was claiming I chided him for being drunk, when all he had was a “Pepsi”. He wriggled in his improvised bed to protest his innocence against that claim. “It beats me how he got my suite phone number in the first place,” he added. “Anyway, I did not chide him. Why do people like to tell lies?”


i. What happens immediately before this excerpt? 4marks

ii. Discuss two character traits of Abiola and one of Fiona McKenzie as brought out in the excerpt. 6marks

iii. Why do people like telling lies? (Write in reported speech) 1 mark

iv. a. The phone rang. Add a question tag 1 mark

b. No, she divorced me last year. (Rewrite in the passive)

v. Highlight two themes raised in the excerpt. 4 marks

vi. Identify and illustrate two features of style used in the excerpt. 4marks

vii. Explain the meaning of the following words as used in the excerpt. 3marks

a. Streetwalker

b. Wriggled

c. Chided

EXERPTS 5: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

Ms McKenzie’s taxi driver finally resurfaced. Wary and watchful, he was part of a growing
African phenomenon: taxi drivers with university degrees whom the local market had failed to
absorb in the professions that they had trained for. He located Ms McKenzie without difficulty.
“Ms McKenzie, let’s go!” he said, motioning her back into his taxi.
She got back in. “You were gone for two eternities,” she complained. “Did you have any particular
“Yes, those bullies,” he said.
“I take it you’re referring to the guards. What did they do?”
“You mean what did they not do?” He drove off on screaming tyres. “Essentially, they wanted
something small.”
“Don’t you mean a bribe? Why did they want a bribe?”
“Ms McKenzie, be serious!”
“I am serious.”
“Then leave me alone.” He gave the car more petrol. It threatened to fly. He gave it less. It slowed
down. “Because my taxi has faulty brakes, they said.”
“Well, maybe it does.”
He braked to a screeching halt which nearly threw her out of her seat.
“So does it?” he asked her. “Have faulty brakes, I mean?”
“I guess not,” she conceded. “So what did you do? Give them something small anyway?”
“Leave me alone, I said.” Then he drove off again.
“Anyway, in case you bribed them, know that giving bribes is as much a crime as taking them.”
“Do you know what I’m going to do on my way back, Ms McKenzie? I’m going to ask the guards I
bribed to arrest me for bribing them.”
There is anger in that sarcastic remark, she thought. She decided to leave him alone.
1. Outline the events leading to this excerpt (3 marks)

2. To what extend has the author employed the use of irony in this excerpt? (4 marks)

3. How have the following characters been portrayed in the excerpt: (4 marks)

a) Ms McKenzie

b) The taxi driver

4. The taxi driver refers to the guards as bullies. From elsewhere in the novel, show how the

guards demonstrate that indeed they are bullies. (3 marks)

5. With sufficient evidence, identify any two issues brought out in the excerpt (4 marks)

  1. “There is anger in that sarcastic remark.” Rewrite adding a suitable question tag (1 mark)

7. What happens immediately after this excerpt: (3 marks)

8. Give the meanings of the following words as used in the excerpt (3 marks)

a) Wary………………………………………………………………………………………

b) Two eternities …………………………………………………………………………

c) Bullies……………………………………

Fathers Of Nations Recent KCSE Excerpt Essay Questions

EXERPTS 6: Fathers of Nations (25 marks)

Read the excerpt below and answer the questions that follow. (25 marks)

Professor Kimani, who had just completed his studies at the University of Oxford, wrote from

there to say he wanted to fill it. To ensure he came and filled it for sure, the University of

Nairobi raised his entry point from that of a lecturer to that of a senior lecturer.

He came. Only a month after his arrival, he launched a noisy debate in which he demanded that

the University of Nairobi henceforth strive for relevance to the society rather than

simplyexcellence of its work. It was not clear exactly what he meant by relevance to the

society rather than simply excellence of its work. It was not clear exactly what he meant

by relevanceto the society. However, a short six months later, he prevailed. The

university’s official mottobecame, ‘Relevance to the society’.

After winning this war, he started another war which was even noisier. Now he wanted the

university to be an agent of change, not a mere spectator of it. This was when people still

thought this view was too radical and ridiculed it as simple- minded. So, not surprising,

someof his colleagues, puzzled by his refusal to see that it was simple-minded, did or said

little, convinced that he would fall on his face before long and self-destruct on his own

without their help.

He did not care. After all, his antics in wars that he had started, and won, had also won him the

heart of a campus beauty queen. Her name was AsiyaOmondi. He married her on a rainy

but approving Saturday, to claps of thunder and flashes of lightning. How marriage then

accelerated academic success! A professorship soon followed. After that achievement, he

feltfulfilled. His persona now was complete. Had anyone told him this happiness would

one dayend as it did, he would have laughed himself upside down.


a) What had happened immediately before the excerpt ? ( 2marks)

b) After Kimani fills a vacancy in University of Nairobi’s Institute of Development

Studies, he demands for two changes at the university in quick succession. What are

these changes? (2 marks)

c) Identify and illustrate two character traits of Kimani brought out in this excerpt.


d) Discuss two themes raised in the excerpt. (4 marks)

e) (i) To ensure he came and filled it for sure, the University of Nairobi raised his entry

point from that of a lecturer to that of a senior lecturer. (Write beginning with the

mainclause). (1 mark)

(ii) His persona now was complete. (Add a question tag) (1 mark)

(iii) Now he wanted the university to be an agent of change, not a mere spectator of

it. (Rewrite using a co-ordinating conjunction) (1mk)

f) Identify and explain two stylistic devices used in the excerpt. (4 marks)

g) Explain the meaning of the following words used in the excerpt. (2 marks)

(i) Launched

(ii) Henceforth

h) Using your knowledge from elsewhere in the novel, highlight the misfortunes that befell

Prof. Kimani. (4 marks)

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