Three tribes have half of teaching jobs in Kenya, report shows

Teachers' Service Commission (TSC) CEO Nancy Macharia before the National Assembly's PAC committee at the Parliament buildings, Nairobi. [Elvis Ogina,Standard]

The three tribes that dominate nearly half of the teaching fraternity have been revealed in a new report released by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).

It is now emerging that the Kalenjin, Kikuyu and Luhya tribes take up nearly 50 per cent of the 406,860 teachers under the government’s payroll.

With 73,309 teachers, the Kalenjin community are listed as the tribe with majority tutors in the TSC payroll.

The Kikuyu tribe is second with 64,937 while the Luhya community have 60,912 teachers.

Cumulatively, the three tribes take up 48 per cent of the teaching service revealing massive disparity in regional balance on public teaching jobs across the country.

The data was tabled in the Senate Standing Committee on National Cohesion and Equal Opportunity.

It further reveals that the Kamba community has the fourth-highest number of teachers in the State payroll.

The tribe has 48,201 teachers, followed closely by the Luo community with 47,285 closing the top five communities that dominate the teaching service.

Overall, the Kalenjin, Kikuyu, Luhya, Kamba and Luo constitute 70 per cent of the teaching sector.

In total, this means that the five communities have a total of 294,644 teachers employed by the TSC.

In the report, the Kisii community are listed as the sixth most dominant tribe in the teaching service with 35,236 teachers. This represents eight per cent.

They are followed with the Meru at 25,930.

This means that TSC has employed 355, 810 teachers from only seven tribes which translates to 87 per cent of the entire teaching fraternity in public service.

It also means that the remaining 38 communities are left with just 51,050 teaching positions. This represents 13 per cent.

In the report, Kenyan Europeans have the least number of teachers under TSC payroll with only one tutor.

This is followed by Kenyan Asians with only nine teachers, and Dasnach-Shangil (11).

Others trailing the employment list include Murulle (14), Elmolo (17), Gosha (20), Njemps (26),  Kenyan Arab (23), Sakuye (32), Dorobo (17), Rendille 87.

In her response to the revelations, TSC Chief Executive Dr Nancy Macharia defended the numbers noting that they reflect the distribution of the country's population.

 "The figure is very relative to the population of the country. The commission has achieved ethnic balance at various stages of appointment in that there is no representation of more than one-third of staff coming from the same ethnic community,'' Dr Macharia said.

Dr Macharia argued that the commission embraces fair competition and merit as the basis of appointments and promotions.

''We regularly review our policies to ensure the realization of constitutional aspirations on gender balance, fair competition, and employment of persons with disabilities," she said.

At the same time, the same trend replicates at the TSC secretariat with minor adjustments.

The Kikuyu community dominates employment in the secretariat with 567 staff. This represents 19 per cent of entire secretariat staff,.

This is followed by 483 staff hailing from the Kalenjin community, representing 16 per cent.

Kambas come third with 360 staff, representing 12 per cent of the entire secretariat staff.

Another 300 staff are from Luhya community making them the fourth dominant tribe in the secretariat.

Closing the list of top five tribes in the secretariat is the Kisii community with 226 employees with Luos closely following at sixth position with 221 staff.

In its report, TSC says it has employed a total of 204,373 female teachers and 202,487 male teachers thus achieving gender parity in employment of teachers.

Additionally, the Commission says it has made efforts to include persons living with disabilities (PWDs) in its recruitment. Report says some 5,666 PWD teachers have been employed.

The document shows that some 153,539 teachers are between the ages of 30 and 39 making up the biggest chunk of teachers on age basis.

Those between 20 and 24 are 1,912 teachers, those between 25 and 29 years comprise of 50,485 tutors.

Teachers between the ages of 40 and 49 make up 107,837 of the TSC workforce while those between 50 and 59 are 90,459.

Aging teachers between the ages of 60 and 64 comprise of a mere 2,548 while the lowest representation is of those between 65 and 70 years with only 80 teachers represented here.

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