Thursday, August 9, 2012

Educationist: Dr. Eddah Wacheke Gachukia

Starting her education career as a secondary school teacher of Thika High School in 1960, Dr. Eddah W. Gachukia is one of the longest serving and respected educationist in Kenya. In her more than four decades career, she has dedicated her life to education and development of women welfare in the country and Africa as a whole.
In 1992, she joined other women education ministers and women Vice-chancellors from the continent to establish the Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE), which has increased access to education for millions of girls in Africa.
Together with her husband Dr. Daniel Gachukia, a respected educationist and friends, they set up the Riara Group of Schools in 1974. The school started as a simple kindergarten growing in leaps and bounds to be one of the most prestigious schools in the country. The institution now boasts of five distinct campuses and is edging closer to opening a private university, Riara University along the busy Mbagathi Way.
Mrs. Gachukia also had a remarkable political career serving as a nominated Member of Parliament for two terms between 1974 and 1983. The former University of Nairobi professor also served as the President of FAWE, chairperson of the National Council of Women of Kenya and the influential women’s umbrella organization, Maendeleo Ya Wanawake.
The Alliance Girls Alumni has authored numerous educational journals and books with ‘Accelerating the Education of Girls and Women in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Development Imperative’ being the most popular in her collection.
Some of the other publications include ‘Gender, education, and training: a case for affirmative action’; ‘Teaching of African literature in schools’ with S. Kichamu Akivaga; ‘The Women’s Grant in bilateral assistance: main report’ with Janne Lexow and ‘Notes on Ngugi wa Thiongo’s The River Between’.  
Apart from being the first woman Chancellor of Moi University, Dr. Gachukia will be remembered for steering the taskforce of Free Primary School Education Programme.
This stunning lady is the recipient of many honors and awards for her outstanding contributions in the realm of education. Here are a few of them;
In 1997, H.E President of Senegal Abdou Diouf honored her for service to Girls’ and Women Education in Africa.
In the 25th graduation ceremony of Kenyatta University held in December 2008, she was honored alongside Tanzania’s President Jakaya Kikwete with a Doctor of Humane Letters (honoris causa).
In 2009, The International Committee of the Fellowship of the Least Coin honored her, for exemplary effort in education development in Kenya.  

Photo courtesy of


  1. what an impressive woman

  2. now she has opened riara university

  3. Eddah has been agreat inspiration to the people of Kenya


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