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Over 1 000 teachers left North Eastern region over insecurity

17 June 2015, 09:27 Jose Mwanake

Mombasa - Over 1 000 public primary and secondary teachers in North Eastern region have never reported back to work since January, head teachers from the region have said.

This is after the increased wave of terror attack in the region, the latest being the April 2 Garissa University attack where 148 people were killed.

Last December, the teaching fraternity lost about 20 teachers who were among the 48 people killed in a bus attack as they travelling back home for the Christmas holiday.

The Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) Secretary General, Willson Sossion cautioned non-local teachers from returning to the region until they are assured of security.

Kenya Secondary School Heads Association national assistant secretary, Ibrahim Hassan said Tuesday that education sector in the region has been greatly affected by the directive.

Hassan, who is also the principal of Mandera secondary school, said 600 secondary school teachers and over 400 others from primary schools, who were posted in the region by the Teacher Service Commission, have never reported back to work.

Read Also: Sossion to blame for education woes in North Eastern

“As we are speaking, many schools in Mandera, Wajir and Garrissa have remained closed since the beginning of the year,” said Hassan.

He was speaking to the press on the sidelines of the ongoing 40th edition of the Kessha annual conference at the Wild Waters centre in Mombasa.

He faulted KNUT for issuing blanket condemnation that the entire North Eastern region was insecure for the non-resident teaching staff, saying that over 36 000 secondary school students have been affected by teachers’ shortage.

“KNUT has been fighting for the rights of teachers, but they have forgotten the thousands of students born and raised in the North Eastern,” said Hassan.

The principal of Elwak Boys secondary, which is located in Mandera along the Kenyan-Somali border, said North Eastern children are being denied their right to education.

“Over 75 percent of non-local teachers in public schools never reported to work, but those in private schools resumed their duties,” said Mohamed Noor.

“We are asking TSC to look into the issue so that teachers who were previously posted in regions that are now secure can go back to work,” he appealed.

He asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to give an executive order that students who clear form four in the region be allowed to be hired as untrained teachers.

“The local youth who have cleared form four should be hired as untrained teachers and help curb the shortage,” said Noor.

According to him, these youth will be going for further their studies during the holidays, either in at the Universities or Teachers Training Colleges.

The heads from Garrisa also called on the government to beef up security in the region so that the three tertiary institutions- Garissa University, Garissa Teachers Training College and Garissa’s Kenya Medical Training College, can be reopened.

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