Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga says a quick solution must be crafted to get a way out of the ongoing education crisis in Northern Eastern Kenya, where teachers have withdrawn over insecurity incidents.
Teachers Service Commission, last month, transferred more than 3,000 non-local teachers from Wajir, Mandera and Garissa counties following terror attacks purportedly targeting tutors.
Speaking during the Building Bridges Initiative rally in Garissa on Sunday, Odinga called for urgent measures to be taken to end the crisis.
“It is painful for children to go to classrooms where there are no teachers. We must find a solution to this,” he said.
“We must bring teachers and also declare an affirmative action so that we can have more local teachers working here.”
The mass exodus of teachers came after militants attacked Kamuthe Resource Centre and killed three male teachers on 13 January.
The matter has also caught the attention of the National Assembly which has summoned TSC boss Nancy Macharia, Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha and Inspector General Hillary Mutyambai.
Speaker Justin Muturi directed that the trio appear to explain how different government departments can be acting at cross purposes, the TSC claiming in security while the police maintain there is adequate security in all parts of the country.
Leader of Majority Aden Duale says most national government programmes including the ongoing roll out of Competency Based Curriculum and 100% secondary school transitions have stalled in the northern Kenya region as a result of the actions by TSC to withdraw teachers on security grounds.
“TSC Act doesn’t allow it to divide its workforce across the country along tribal, ethnic and religious line as it has happened in the mass transfers of teachers in NEP,” Duale said.
“The Constitution of Kenya, in Article 53 (1) (b) state that every child has a right to free and compulsory basic education and Article 55 (a) the State shall take measures, including affirmative action programmes, to ensure that the youth access relevant education and training.”
The recent withdrawal of non-local teachers is not new to the region where terror attacks are frequent, with Kenyans from other parts of the country being the main target.
In 2018, there was a similar mass walkout of teachers from the region due to insecurity.