Marsabit County News
Marsabit County borders Ethiopia to the North and North East, Wajir County to the East, Isiolo County to the South East, Samburu County to the South and South West and Lake Turkana to the West and North West in the former Eastern Province is vast, with an area spawning 70,961.3Km2.
Marsabit County is located 550 kms North of Nairobi. It is one of the richest in natural minerals with a unique topography and rare wild life niche. The largest of Kenya’s 47 counties, the County boasts of a huge landmass covering 70,961 square kilometers with a population of about 310,000 people and is endowed with scenic valleys rich in tourism sites. The name, “Marsabit” derived from how the white explorers explained the area as “Mars a bit” an old English word to mean “High and cool”.
As the largest county, Marsabit borders five counties; Wajir to the East,Turkana to the West and Isiolo to the South. It also borders the country of Ethiopia to the North with about 500 kilometer stretch. The county comprises four constituencies (Saku, North Horr, Laisamis and Moyale). Administratively it has seven districts.
People of Marsabit County
Marsabit County is home to 291,166 people (male – 52% and female – 48%), according to the 2009 National Census. The county is populated by 14 ethnic communities including the Cushitic Rendile, Gabbra and Borana as well as the Nilotic Samburu and Turkana. The county is also home to Elmolo, the smallest tribe in Kenya.
Major Towns in Marsabit County
The seat of the County Government – Marsabit town, is situated 270Kms north of Isiolo town, with most trading and urban centers within the county ranging from 60Kms to over 300Kms from Marsabit town. Marsabit town sits at an altitude of 1,500m above sea level.
Marsabit town is situated on the Nairobi-Addis Ababa highway, hosting the county headquarters and bordering the Marsabit National Park.
Marsabit is also a popular trading point between Kenya and Ethiopia facilitating supply and movement of goods and services through Moyale town.
In order to attract skilled workers, potential entrepreneurs, and also tap into the immense benefits of the LAPSSET project, Marsabit town requires urgent attention in holistic planning which the county government is committed to providing.
Economic Activities in Marsabit
Livestock keeping is the backbone of Marsabit County’s economy. The economy of the county almost entirely revolves around livestock rearing. Almost each household keeps livestock and facets of the livestock industry impact on all other economic and social segments. Agriculture is also practised. Main cash crops grown in the County include vegetables and fruits whereas food crops include maize, wheat, tea, green grams, cowpeas beans and millet. Other potential crops include mangoes, yellow passion, pineapples, pawpaw, citrus, avocado and bananas.
Other economic activities in the county include:
- Salt mining
- Gemstones mining
- Sand harvesting
Tourist Attractions in Marsabit County
There are numerous types of wildlife and birds and attractions such as. Lake Paradise (inside Marsabit National Park and Reserve) and Bongole Crater. The County has four National Parks, namely; Marsabit, Sibiloi, Central and Southern Islands on lake Turkana side of Marsabit. Others include volcanoes and crater lakes. Mount Marsabit Mountain peak and the singing wells.
Accommodation and Hotels in Marsabit County
Marsabit Lodge situated within Marsabit National Park is a popular choice for many tourists. Other accommodation facilities include Ahmed and Abdul camp-sites near the national park, Al-Yusra Hotel and Hotel Abreham in Moyale.
Hospitals in Marsabit County
There are several hospitals and health centres in the County’s major urban centres. Health facilities in the county include the Marsabit District Hospital, Moyale District Hospital, Laisamis Health Center and AIC Gatab Hospital in Loiyangalani.
Financial Institutions in Marsabit County
Among the financial institutions in the region include Equity Bank and the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB).
Marsabit County’s Potential
Marsabit County is blessed with immense potential for growth. The potential strengths of Marsabit County are;
- Livestock rearing: The county economy almost entirely revolves around livestock rearing. Almost each household keeps livestock and facets of the livestock industry impact on all other economic and social segments.
- Land: Marsabit County covers an area of 70,961.9 sq km which offers abundant land for real estate development, ranches, industries, stadia, hotels, learning institutions e.t.c.
- Marsabit National Park: This national park is the home of Ahmed and Abdulahi the largest pair of elephants in Kenya, until their deaths in the early 1980’s. The park is also home to countless wildlife species ranging from tens of bird species, elephants, leopards, buffaloes, baboons, antelopes, spotted hyenas and many others. The park also hosts tens of craters teaming with hundreds of lives.
- Mount Marsabit Tropical Rainforest: A rare scenic feature, this rain forest is surrounded by semi desert and desert conditions. It houses two crater lakes; Lake Paradise and Lake Sokorte. It is the only source of drinking water for Marsabit town residents and the main source of replenishment for other aquifers in the lowlands.
- Natural resources: Lake Turkana (about 85% of this lake is within Marsabit County); South Lake National Reserve which also borders Sibiloi National Park. Sibiloi is the home of Koobi Fora which is the world renowned cradle of mankind; wind energy which can be tapped from the region stretching from Arbjahan to the east, all the way through Bubisa, North Horr and Loiyangalani to the west. Reports abound that the energy potential of the county can power the entire East African Community region if harnessed well; Solar energy which the county has a lot of potential on; International border where the county shares over 500 Kms of border with Ethiopia, a nation of 84 million people; mineral potential in minerals such as copper, beryl, nepheline, nickel, asbestos, graphite, tourmaline, garnet, iron ore, magnetite, rare earth, talc, chromite, gold and salt among others.
- Cultural diversity: Marsabit County is home to over 14 different communities. These culturally different communities largely co-exist peacefully and each has its comparative advantage. Cultural tourism has a huge potential in the county. To date two annual features underline the county calendar; Lake Turkana Cultural Festival held in Loiyangalani and Kalacha Cultural festival.
- Human resource capacity: The County has a modest but well trained human resource base.
- Sectoral planning: Livestock, Trade, Energy, Education, Health, human resource, Tourism, Water and Mineral mining sectors require urgent study and planning.
- Business planning: All the economic potentials of the county will count for nothing, if well studied and empirically supported business planning is not commissioned.
Sub Counties in Marsabit County
Marsabit county is made up of 4 sub-counties which in turn are sub-divided into 20 electoral wards as shown below:
- Kargi/South Horr
- Marsabit Central
- North Horr
- Moyale Township
Marsabit County Jobs opportunities for all qualified personnel and those who would wish to work with Marsabit County government. Jobs in Marsabit County are posted on the county website.
Jobs in Marsabit County are awarded in a free, fair and transparency manner in the need to fight corruption in the
To access these Marsabit county jobs advertisement click the link: Marsabit County Jobs for the latest job opportunities in the county.
Marsabit County Tenders
Marsabit county tenders are awarded in a free, fair and transparency manner in the need to fight corruption in the country.
To access tenders in Marsabit county click the link: http://marsabit.go.ke/ for the latest job opportunities in the county.
Marsabit County Governor and Deputy Governor
The current governor of Marsabit County is Hon. Ukur Yatani Kanacho and the deputy governor is Hon. Omar Abdi Ali.
Constituencies in Marsabit County
Marsabit County Wards
Details about Marsabit County Wards will be updated soon…
Facts About Marsabit County
Marsabit County is located in Eastern Kenya bordering Ethiopia to the North and North East, Wajir County to the East, Isiolo County to the South East, Samburu County to the South and South West, and Lake Turkana to the West and North West.
Area (Km 2): 70, 961.3 Km 2
Climate/Weather: Temperatures range from a minimum of 10.1°C to a maximum of 30.2°C, with an annual average of 20.1°C. Rainfall ranges between 200mm and 1,000mm per annum.
Road Network: Bitumen Surface (0 Km), Gravel Surface (397 Km), Earth Surface (2,034 Km)
Key National Monument(s): Marsabit National Park, Mount Marsabit Tropical rain forest
Marsabit County Population
Population: 291,166 (Male –52%, Female – 48 %)
Population Density: 4 people per Km2
National Percentage: 0.8 %
Annual Growth Rate: 2.8%
Age Distribution: 0-14 years (47 %), 15-64 years (49 %), 65+ years (4 %)
Number of Households: 56,941
Marsabit County Government
County Capital: Marsabit (proposed)
Number of Constituencies (2010): 4 (Moyale, North Horr, Saku, Laisamis)
Registered Voters: 87,102
National percentage: 0.69 %
Number of Districts (2010): 4 (Marsabit, Chalbi, Laisamis and Moyale)
Number of Local Authorities (2010): 2 (County councils of Marsabit and Moyale)
Economy of Marsabit County
Poverty Level: 92%
Age Dependency Ratio: 100:104
Resources: Wildlife, Lake Turkana, Forests, rangelands, Wind and Solar
Tourist Attractions: Marsabit National Park & Reserve, Sibiloi and South Island National Park, Lake Sokote, Lake Paradise
Financial Services: 2 commercial banks, 1 micro-finance institution
Main Economic Activities/industries: Livestock rearing, Small-scale fishing, Sand harvesting, Stone mining, Salt mining, Mining of gems and precious stones and small scale trading
Agricultural products: Beef, maize, beans, wheat, pulses and fruit, Miraa.
Education in Marsabit County
Number of Institutions (2007): Primary (126), Secondary (16)
Primary: Enrolment (40,332)
Teacher to Pupil Ratio: 1: 54 (Public Schools)
Secondary: Enrolment (1,101)
Teacher to Pupil Ratio: 1:30 (Public Schools)
Adult Literacy Classes: Enrolment (5,227)
Health in Marsabit County
Health Facilities: 51 – District Hospitals (1), Sub-District Hospitals (-), Dispensaries (34), Health Centres (6), Medical Clinics (8), Nursing Homes (-), Maternity Homes (-), Others (2)
Doctor to Population Ratio: 1:10,000 (Moyale), 1:63,825 (Other)
Infant Mortality Rates: 47/1000 (Marsabit District)
Under Five Mortality Rates: 70/1000 (Marsabit) 50/1000 (Moyale District)
Prevalent Diseases: Malaria, Intestinal Worms, Diseases of the Respiratory Tract, Diarrhoea
Notable Hospitals: Marsabit District Hospital
Marsabit County Contacts
Telephone: +254 069 221 022 57
Fax: +254 069 202 102 136
Address: 384, 60500, MARSABIT
Marsabit County Website