Why Magoha's nation of plumbers would be a miserable one

What you need to know:

  • In a recent public address, Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha was understandably frustrated that a plumber cannot be found within his neighbourhood.
  • In his view, it is therefore “stupid” to continue to provide education for people who will not find employment from that training, like is the case with the Kenyan education system, when these people could have been plumbers.
  • However, the ratio of Kenyans with indoor plumbing may be low but another 21 percent have piped water into the main yard and this may be the demand that should support the need for more plumbers.
  • The anecdote is correct, but the economics reasoning contained in Prof. Magoha’s conclusions are wrong.

Keeping a keen eye on the public sector is important because government is the largest single spender in Kenya. State officers have very effective platforms and their preferences affect public conversations. The ideas that they express, whether as conjecture or as their experiences often informs public reasoning about economic and public affairs.


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