Photo Courtesy: Lalbiby Mansoor
Anyone who hears me talk about my high school; Sheikh Khalifa, one would think that I never had a single difficulty in the school and thus the high level of loyalty. Ironically, I had my share of high school teen drama; doing punishments such as slashing, washing the loos, being caned, kneeling down in front of the staff room and even had my one trip to Mrs. Feiruz’s office (the then deputy principal) which was then considered a dreadful thing especially when you were not paying her a rather pleasant visit. Okay okay, I know how this statement is too shocking but most of the times it was collective punishments for the whole class. Apparently I am lucky I never had to kneel down at the fish pond when my mates were asked to do so. Yet thinking about Sheikh Khalifa and my experiences in university, I honestly consider high school as heaven. It is the place I wouldn’t mind going back to and starting form one all over again but please without the math and the sciences hahaha. It is the place I consider highest for spiritual and personal growth. Anyway, those remain to be memories never to be forgotten for I was able to grow and learn from my mistakes, experiences and friendships. Now back to me being the Khalifan paparazzi that I’ve always been and to the main aim of this article.
So finally, the awaited library of the school plus the labs are ready for use. For the ex-students, this can be really thrilling yet envy-provoking news. I mean, remember how we had to squeeze up in the labs and sometimes, the very wet labs to do practicals? What about the small and cute library that we had whereby sometimes you walk in and you find an entire class inside and your appetite to read just disappears immediately? Oh yeah? Well right now when you pay a visit to the school you would wish to sleep inside the big and spacious library. As for the labs, they seem so appealing that right now the students are going to the place even after class hours including the form ones and I wonder what do they even go do there?! I bet as from this year, we will have many more students taking full sciences due to the awesome labs. In fact just before the event started, we made a tour to one of the labs where form ones were having a biology class with Mrs Twaliba and we were able to capture them as the class went on. They seemed pretty much happy about the labs too. I don’t know if I saw it right, but later on perusing through the pics with the one and only Amina Khamis, there looked something like a kikoto on the desk lol; Mrs Twaliba making sure the A’s come down like rain? I guess so!
Yesterday, 18/2/16, was the official opening of the two architectural masterpieces; the biggest library in Mombasa and one of the biggest in Kenya as well and the science labs that look just too magnificent. The two buildings have hanging walls and without forgetting that the labs have an alternate circulation of air which makes it an awesome ventilation for the classes. Over 140 million was used for this huge project and part of it, 2.5 million was donated by the C.E.O of National bank Mr. Munir Ahmed for the lab apparatus. The labs are now 8; 4 are the new ones. As for the library, the rooms will be 12 for both boys and girls. But that’s not the climax of the story yet. The climax is that the library is going to have an audio visual room with an interactive smart board for presentations. There will also be 24 new computers with internet for the student to research on but there will be restrictions on which sites the students will visit. Who else is biting their finger right now wishing they could still be at SK?! Mashallah for this great blessing and hopefully we keep seeing greater changes in the school in shaa Allah.
The official opening event took place at the fish pond area whereby two representatives of Sheikh Khalifa foundation attended. The guest of honour was Sultan Al-Khafaily and his mate was Ahmed Khoury together with other guests including Board of Trustees members including Mr Rajab Sumba and Board of Governors including Mr Sayyid Hemed. From the visitors was also Mr Mohammad Islam of Maize Millers among’st others. The occasion began with the wonderful recitation of the Qur’an thereafter followed by the scouts. I couldn’t help but hear my friend who joined me into the event, Lalbiby Mansoor, as she slowly whispered the Khalifan anthem along the scouts. I joined too and it felt such a patriotic moment, proudly Khalifan right?! The hilarious moment was when the scout leader was commanding his mates and he was using words like ‘nyamalato nyamalato’ lol I hear that is Zulu language? Then came the wonderfully spoken Arabic speech by Abdulrahman Hassan but the girl who made the day was Salma H. Amin who gave a spectacular speech with a spectacular American accent. Her last quote is still stuck in my mind as she mentioned what Johann Schiller said ‘Only those who have the patience to do simple things perfectly will get the ability to do difficult things easily.’ Two other students came next and recited a nasheed as their awesome voices echoed the compound. Our guest of honour spoke as expected; with an Arabic accent followed by a speech by the principal whereby he brought forward the fact that, ‘if we were to build it ourselves it would have costed each student at least ksh. 160,000.
So the Khalifa Foundation having done it for us is such blessing and we can’t thank the foundation and president of U.A.E enough … All we have is prayers for them.’
Next was the cutting of the library ribbon by the guest of honour together with the girl prefects. We had a short tour inside the library as the girl prefects got excited; stepping inside the building for the first time. I couldn’t help but notice one prefect who kept asking Mrs Fatma (the now deputy principal), ‘Madam, does this mean we can come here at any time?’
As if it still didn’t sink in she repeated the question, ‘Madam ANY TIME?!’ Lol, I bet we will now be having students who never used to step in the library before, now spending their entire time in the library.
Lalbiby and I had our laugh as we checked the number of switches for the fans and lights in the library; 24?!! Hahah I can imagine a student using almost 10 minutes trying to know which is the switch to the fan where they are seated and most probably end up giving up, just sit down and ‘vumilia kuwa Mkenya’ or should it be ‘vumilia kuwa Mombasan?’ with all this heat?! Nonetheless, the calligraphy of Qur’anic texts in the library are just masterpieces worth the praise MashaaAllah!
Then came the tour to the science labs together with the boys prefects and the visitors were shown the different labs including a new computer lab.
At the end of it i’m sure all the guests were really impressed with the achievements. Even though I am not there anymore, I am grateful for what the honourable Sheikh Khalifa and his foundation plus all the well wishers are doing to the school. I am very glad I attended the event, especially that Mr Rishard made sure Lalbiby and I sat in the V.I.P section with the guests :p It was awesome alhamdulilah and before I end, I would like to appreciate Lalbiby’s efforts to capture best pictures without forgetting that we were literally following every step that the hired photographer was taking. Hehe we got photography tips from the guy you can bet! I hope he didn’t notice we were copying his moves though lol.
To end this hearty article, if you are ex-Khalifan be proud that you were once part of this great school irregardless of its flaws. As for you who is still Khalifan, make best use of the chances there because once you get to university, you will realise that we had the best kind of mentorship in the school. Alhamdulilah for everything and I salute you all Khalifans by saying, ‘I am proudly Khalifan…kulluna Khalifa!!
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