Embu County News

Embu County is located in the Eastern region of Kenya, it borders Tharaka Nithi County to the North, Kitui County to the East, Machakos County to the South, Muranga County to the South West, Kirinyaga County to the West, and Meru county to the North West.

Embu County is a geopolitical-administrative region in Kenya. It is one of the 47 Counties established under the First Schedule of the Constitution of Kenya 2010. The headquarters of the County are in Embu town which is 130 km north-east of Nairobi.

The County has a population of 516,212 people and covers an area of 2,818 Sq km. The major ethnic communities in the County are the Embu, Mbeere and the Kamba. There are also found other cosmopolitan ethnic communities especially in the urban centres of the County.

The County comprises of 4 constituencies; Manyatta, Runyenjes, Mbeere North and Mbeere South. The current leadership of the county as elected in the 2013 general elections comprises of Senator Lenny Kivuti, Governor Martin Wambora and the County Assembly members under Speaker Justus Kariuki.

Embu County is home to Mwea National Reserve and 3 of the 7 Kenya famed hydroelectric water dams (the 7 forks) along the river Tana i.e. Kamburu, Kindaruma and Kiambeere dams. The main economic activities in the region include Tea, Coffee, Macadamia and dairy farming in the upper zones of the county (Manyatta and Runyenjes) and livestock and bee keeping in the lower zones (Mbeere and Mwea).

Embu County Map

Embu County Map
Embu County Map

Embu County Government Structure

Embu County Governor and Deputy Governor

The current governor of Embu County is Hon. Martin Nyaga Wambora and the deputy governor is Hon. Dorothy Nditi Muchungu.

Constituencies in Embu County

  1. Manyatta Constituency
  2. Runyenjes Constituency
  3. Gachoka Constituency
  4. Siakago Constituency

Registered Voters in Embu County

Eligible Vs. Registered Voters by Constituency
Consituency Eligible Voters Registered Voters Proportion of Registered Voters
Manyatta 98,703 74,115 75.09%
Runyejess 88,254 66,261 75.08%
Mbeere North 47,174 36,423 77.21%
Mbeere South 71,465 50,190 70.23%
Total 305,596 226,989 74.28%

Embu County Wards

Details about Embu County Wards will be updated soon…

Embu County Assembly

The Embu County assembly is consist of 15 elected members and 7 other nominated members to the county assembly by political parties. Read more…

Embu County Jobs

Embu County Jobs opportunities for all qualified personnel and those who would wish to work with Embu County government. Jobs in Embu County are posted on the county website.

Jobs in Embu County are awarded in a free, fair and transparency manner in the need to fight corruption in the country.

To access these Embu county jobs advertisement click the link: Embu County Jobs for the latest job opportunities in the county.

Embu County Tenders

Embu county tenders are awarded in a free, fair and transparency manner in the need to fight corruption in the country.

To access tenders in Embu county click the link: http://www.embu.go.ke/ for the latest tender opportunities in the county.

Education and Schools in Embu County

Embu County is renowned for its numerous learning institutions. As of 2013, there are 468 primary schools serving 125,420 students and 163 secondary schools serving about 27,000 students. The ratio of pupil to teacher in public schools stands at 1:35 while that of student to teacher in public secondary schools is 1:25.

Some top schools include Kangaru girls’ and Kangaru boys’ high schools, Kyeni girls’ secondary near Runyenjes, St. Mary Kiangima girls boarding school, Kiambeere school complex, Nguviu boys, Nguviu girls secondary schools among others.The

The county has 24 insitutions of higher learning including; Government training Institute (GTI), Embu University College formerly E.A.S.T College which plays host to satellite campuses of leading public universities such as Nairobi and Kenyatta Universities. There are also privately owned colleges that are located in the major towns which include Kenya institute of Management, Embu College and Achievers College that offer business and information technology courses.

Universities and Colleges in Embu County

Universities in Embu County

Embu county boasts of numerous universities and constituent colleges allied to various national universities in Kenya. They include:

  1. Embu University College – a constituent of the University of Nairobi located at Kangaru in Embu town
  2. The Kenya Anglican University with main campus at Kanyuambora in Mbeere, along Embu-Ishiara road
  3. Other national universities with campuses in Embu include:
  4. Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT)
  5. Kenyatta University (KU)
  6. Chuka University College
  7. Kenya Institute of Management (Management University of Africa)

Public Youth Polytechnics in Embu County

  1. Kangaru Polytechnic
  2. Nembure Polytechnic
  3. Kathunguri Youth Polytechnic
  4. Kanja Polytechnic

Teacher Training Colleges in Embu County

  1. St. Marks’ Teachers Training College, Kigari
  2. St. Augustine Teachers’ Training College – Ishiara area
  3. White Brook Teachers’ Training College – Embu-Meru highway

Technical Colleges in Embu county

  1. Embu Technical Training Centre in Kubukubu
  2. Rwika Technical Institute – Kiritiri road

Commercial Colleges in Embu County

  1. Embu College of Professional Studies
  2. Embu Institute of Business Management
  3. Gatumo School of Accountancy
  4. Kenya Institute of Professional Counseling
  5. Intraglobal Training Institute
  6. Superior Commercial & Secretarial College
  7. Wyda College of Advanced Information & Communication Technology
  8. Cannyk School of Hairdressing & Beauty Therapy
  9. Galmourland School of Hair Design & Beauty Therapy
  10. Wanjua School of Beauty Therapy & Hairdressing

Secondary Schools in Embu County

Secondary Schools in Embu East

Ciamanda Mixed
Gatumbi Baptist Mixed Day
Gichiche Sec.
Gitare Mixed
Kagaari Mixed
Kariru Secondary
Kegonge Boys High School
Kiangungi Baptist
Kithunguthia Day Secondary School
Kyeni Girls
Macumo Day
Moi High Mbiruri
Mufu Sec.
Mugui Sec.
Mukuria Sec
Muragari Sec.
Ndumari Day
Nyagari Mixed
S. A. Gikuuri Sec Sch
S. A. Kyeni Mixed Sec
S. A. Nduuri Sec.
St. Agnes Kiaganari Girls
St. Anthony Kivuria
St. Barnabas Kathari
St. Catherine Nthagaiya
St. Francis Kanja
St. Getrude Sec Kinthithe
St. John Kathande
St. John Kathunguri
St. John’s Fishers
St. Jude Karurumo
St. Marks Ena
St. Mary Goretti Girls-Rukuriri
St. Marys Kigaa Mixed
St. Paul Kiamboa Day
St. Thomas Aquinas
Thigingi Girls
Ugweri Mixed
Ciamanda Mixed

Secondary Schools in Embu North

All Saints Kigari
D.E.B Kairuri Mixed Day
Gituri Sec.
Kamama Sec.
Kamviu Secondary School
Kavutiri Mixed Sec.
Kavutiri Sec.-st stephens
Kianjokoma Day
Kiriari Mixed
Kirigi Secondary School
Kithunguriri Sec.
Muvandori Sec.
Nguviu Boys
Nguviu Girls
S.A Manyatta
St Annes Kiriari Girls
St. Martha Mixed Day
St. Alphonse Mixed
St. Benedicts Karau
St. John’s Kianjuki
St. Joseph The Worker Kathuniri
St. Mary’s Girls Mukangu
St. Peter’s Kagumori
St. Peter’s Kathakwa

Secondary Schools in Embu West

DEB Kangaru Mixed Day
Embu County
Gatituri Sec Sch
Gatondo Sec Sch
Gatunduri Sec.
Itabua Sec.
Kamiu Sec.
Kangaru Boys
Kangaru Girls Sch
Kimangaru Mixed
Kirimari Boys
Kithegi Mixed Sec
Nthambo Mixed
Rukira Day
St. Joseph’s Sec Sch M’tetu
St. Lukes Day Karurina
St. Marys Kiangima Sec
St. Benedicts Kithimu
St. Christopher Mixed
St. Francis Ngoire
St. Michael Kevote Day Sec
St. Michael Mixed Day Sec
St. Paul’s Kevote
St. Teresa Kithimu

Secondary Schools in Mbeere North

Cieria Mixed Sec
Gangara Sec.
Gitiburi Secondary School
Gitii ACK Secondary School
John Xxiii Gwakaithi
Kamarandi Sec.
Kambaru Day Mixed
Kanyuambora Sec.
Karangare Secondary School
Kathagutari St Mathew
Kathigagaceru Sec.
Kavengero St. Barnabas
Kiambere Complex
Kianjeru Sec St Timothy
Kigwambiti Sec. School
Kirie StJohn The Baptist
Kivue Day
Kune Sec
Riandu Sec.
S. A. Itiira
S. A. Muthanthara
Siakago Boys
Siakago Girls
Siakago Mixed St Antony
St. Michael- Kyenire
St. Rita Mixed Day Ngumyumu
St. Lukes Kamwaa

Secondary Schools in Mbeere South

ACK Rianjeru Sec
Consolata Gitaraka Girls
Gategi Girls
Gikiiro Sec.
Igumori Sec.
Iriaitune Mixed
Kabuguri Sec
Kabururi Sec
Kamunyange Sec
Kangungi Sec
Kanyonga Mixed
Karaba Boys Sec
Kerwa Mixed
Kiambere Mixed
Kiamuringa Sec School
Kirima Mixed
Kitololoni Mixed Day
Machang’a Sec.
Makima Mixed
Malikini Sec School
Mariari Girls
Mashamba Sec. Sch.
Mayori Sec.
Mbita Sec.
Mbondoni Sec.
Mbonzuki Sec.
Munyori Sec
Mutuobare Sec
Mutus Mixed Day
Ngenge Sec
Ngiori Integrated Sec
Nyangwa Boys
St. Clare Kangeta
St. Marys Gataka
Stephen Kisilu Sec.
Wachoro Boys
Wango AIC
Yoder Karwigi Mixed
S. A. Gategi Day Mixed

Primary Schools in Embu County

The county has 494 Primary Schools holding about 125,418 pupils

Tourist Attractions in Embu County

Embu County has a wide range of sights, both endearing to local and foreign visitors.
Some places of interest include Mwea National Reserve near Makima town, Mount Kenya climbing expeditions and National Reserve and Karue Hill picnic site off Embu-Runyenjes road and 7 folk hydroelectric power plants near Kiritiri town.

Mwea National Reserve

Category: Tourist Attractions in Embu County

Mwea National Reserve is a game reserve covering 42 sq.km, situated in Makima sub-location of Mwea in Mbeere, Embu County. The reserve is located north-west of Kamburu dam at the confluence of Tana and Thiba rivers.

For more information visit: Mwea National Reserve

Mt. Kenya National Park

Category: Tourist Attractions in Embu County

The 2800km square Mt. Kenya National Park is to the east of the Great Rift Valley, about 175km north-east of Nairobi. The ecosystem lies in Central and Eastern provinces. At 5,199m, the mountain is the second highest peak in Africa.

For more information visit: Mt. Kenya National Park

Also the favorable altitude around the mountain makes Embu one of the preferred locations for sports training, prompting the Athletics Association of Kenya to set up a training camp at St. Mark’s Kigari Teachers’ college.

Accommodation and Hotels in Embu County

Embu town offers accommodation of different style and budgets. Izaak Walton Inn is among the popular hotels with standard accommodation. Other facilities include Slopes Villa, Panesic Hotel, Scouts Centre and Kryptonite Hotel located within Embu town. Other places with good accommodation outside Embu town include Country View Hotel in Mutunduri, Thuchi River Lodge near Runyenjes town, Mountain Breeze Hotel in Gakwegori and Masinga resort near Kiritiri town among others.

How to get to Embu County

You can travel to Embu County from Nairobi, through Makutano – Mwea route, and access the county through Embu town. You may also use the Thika-Garissa highway and gain access through Kiritiri. Public transport plying these routes is found at Tea-room station or Machakos country bus terminus in Nairobi. Embu County can also be accessed privately by air, using Embu airstrip, now being upgraded to public airport status or Masinga airstrip near Mwea National Reserve.

Major Towns in Embu County

EmbuEmbu Town is the most developed urban center and administrative capital of Embu County. It is primarily a civil servants’ city. The population of the town has drastically risen over the last decade attracting a real estate boom.

RunyenjesRunyenjes town is an important trading center between Embu and Tharaka Nithi counties as it is located towards the border of the two counties . It lies some 30 kilometers from Embu town, and is a significant marketplace for small-scale farmers drawn from the surrounding townships.

SiakagoSiakago town is a key trading center for agricultural and livestock products, mostly serving Mbeere people. It is located just below Kiang’ombe hills some 25 kilometers south of Embu town.

Kiritiri – Kiritiri town is located some 30 kilometers south of Embu town along Matuu-Mwingi road. The town has been rapidly growing, owing to its close proximity to the 7 forks hydroelectric power dams. The regions surrounding the town are also popular with livestock, especially goat keeping, making the town a significant marketplace.

Hospitals in Embu County

Among the most prominent health facilities include Embu Provincial General Hospital (Embu town), Runyenjes District Hospital, (Runyenjes town) Siakago District Hospital (Siakago), Consolata Hospital, Kyeni (near Runyenjes), Liberty nursing Home (Embu town), Ishiara sub-District Hospital, Kibugu Health Center and Joy Kim Nursing Home in the outskirts of Embu town that all serve the needs of the residents.

Banks in Embu Town of Embu County

Embu town has 8 banks and over 10 microfinance institutions. These include Barclays, Bank of Africa, Faulu , Diamond Trust Bank, K.C.B, Equity, Cooperative Bank, National Bank, Family Bank, Jitegemea, Jamii Bora, Bimas among others. Banking services are also available in other major towns within the county. Equity bank is available in Runyenjes and Cooperative bank in Siakago.

Business in Embu County

Business and Commerce is diverse in Embu county with the largest concentration being in Embu town. The goods and services traded include:

  1. Agricultural produce
  2. Household items
  3. Hardware products
  4. Manufactured goods
  5. Transportation
  6. Real estate
  7. Mining products
  8. Scrap metal
  9. Furniture
  10. Plastics
  11. Electronics and other consumer products.

The corporate sector includes banks and other companies that generate profit through investment and management of capital. There are many retailers and distributors in the county who act as middle-men, getting manufactured goods to intended consumers.

There are several cooperative societies that engage in various businesses from transport, banking to input and output supplies.

In addition, there are many shops and business outlets stocking a wide range of consumer items. These range from textile, shoes, basic commodities, airtime for mobile phones available daily in all the urban centres and in shops and kiosks found in almost every village.

Environment and Land in Embu County

Embu lies on the windward slopes of Mt. Kenya. It remarkably occupies the most prime fertile lands of the Kenya highlands. The forest cover hosts a great number of flora and fauna. There are two seasons enjoyed each year and the weather is quite favourable for diverse agricultural activities. Instances of drought or famine are extremely rare.

With sufficient water resources, agriculture is prevalent owing to existence of several rivers that flow through the county. Considering the conservation measures that are in place, the county is projected to become water secure with the consequent rise in both agricultural production and household incomes.

Climate and Weather in Embu County

Embu County temperatures are estimated at an average of between 9°C – 28°C due to the county’s location at the foothill of Mount Kenya. The county receives substantial rainfall with average annual precipitation of 1206mm. The wettest season is experienced between March and July while the hottest comes between January and mid-March. Much of the land is largely arable and is well watered by a number of rivers and streams.

Transport in Embu County

  1. Bitumen Surface: 120 Km
  2. Gravel Surface: 402 Km
  3. Earth Surface: 914.3 Km

The County is also host to one airstrip located at Don Bosco in Embu town and is currently being refurbished.

Economic Activities in Embu County

Agriculture is the centerpiece of the economy in Embu County with over 70% of the residents being small scale farmers. Small percentages are business people and civil servants working in government institutions.

Tea, coffee and cotton have been the main cash crops. However, due to their falling prices, many farmers have in the recent years started growing other crops. Mango farming has become a robust economic activity, finding market as far as Nairobi.
Owing to county’s vibrant real estate, sand harvesting has lately become a lucrative business. One of the key up-and-coming economic incentives is the upgrading of Embu airstrip to airport status, which is expected to link up the county’s agribusiness to external market.

Factories in Embu County

The county has several industries ranging from small to large sizes. The larger industries include agro-processing plants such as

  1. Rukuriri, Mungania and Kathangariri Tea factories.
  2. A dairy processing factory in Runyenjes,
  3. Coffee factories,
  4. Cotton factories
  5. Pyrethrum factories,
  6. Construction factories and several posho mills available in towns, market centres and in most villages.

The informal (Jua Kali) sector is outstanding in Embu town and other urban areas producing timber and wood products, sheet metal works and various garages for repair of motor vehicles.

With recent rural electrification, these services are currently available in small towns and markets. The industrial potential of the county has remained largely unexploited.

Bricks and Brick making in Enbu County

Brick making is very common in Embu county. The building of houses using fired clay bricks and brick making technologies constitute a recent adaptation in the county. Due to their relatively low cost, burnt bricks have become popular building materials. They have been used to build houses, commercial buildings, schools and all other types of houses. The soils in most parts of the county have high clay content suited for brick making. Bricks are made at commercial scales for sale to local residents while on the other hand some make their own bricks for constructing houses.

The local bricks are usually produced in bulk quantities and in standard sizes (measuring 5 inches wide, 5 inches thick and approximately 9 -12 inches long). The bricks are stacked together or laid as brickwork using various kinds of mortar to hold the bricks together and make a permanent structure. They provide long lasting and strong building materials, which have been used throughout the history.

Mining in Embu County

Iron Ore in Embu County

There is sufficient evidence of iron ore deposits in Mbeere particularly within river beds that emanate from Kiang’ombe hill. A number of streams in this location still contain the dark deposits of iron in the sand. In earlier days, there were special sites where larger deposits were found and collected. Most of the traditional iron ore mining sites cannot be easily traced due to environmental degradation caused by overgrazing and trampling.

There are several sites in the county that contain deposits of iron ore and await exploration and development.

Some notable sites containing iron ore deposits include: –


It is on Thura River just below the confluence of three streams (Thura, Ganjai and Kauni) at the ridge on the Kirie-Kiritiri road. There is iron ore and most of the deposits appear to emanate from the Kauni stream.


It is on Marivwe stream in Ngoce sub-location of Mbeere. Iron ore deposits are in the stream bed.


This is on Thura River in Mbeere North where dark sand for smelting iron is found.


It is in Kirie in Mbeere where the dark sand containing iron ore was collected and is still discernible.

Ithinthi stream

This is a tributary of Ena River and a seasonal stream that flows through Kigwambiti in Evurori, Mbeere. It contains iron ore deposits too.

Sand Harvesting in Embu County

Sand which occurs naturally in the stream beds or rivers in dry areas is found mostly in Mbeere, Embu County. It is manually scooped from the dry riverbeds mainly on the seasonal rivers such as Marivwe, Njauri, Thura and the lower reaches of Ena river. Other sites where sand scooping is done include: Kithagana seasonal stream near Siakago, Nguu stream around Mecca and Kwamiti areas along Kiritiri-Gachoka road. Also near Kanyariri and on road sides especially on drifts along Siakago-Kiritiri road and other road drifts in Mbeere.

Sand scooping increases during the dry season as an income generating activity. There is a huge potential for investment in this area and requires some coordinated mechanism to ensure sand is harvested sustainably and the benefits trickle back to the local people.

Gemstones Mining in Embu County

Gemstones are found in various parts of Embu County. There are several abandoned mines in the lower Mbeere zones of Evurori and Kiambere. The precious stones are scattered around Kamuthara, Kairiri, Kanthumbi and Mata hill in Kirie. They have also been found in Ngoce and Kirigo hill in Evurori as well as Kavaci near Kiang’ombe in Nthawa. A few old mines can be found in Kiangunguru near Kiambere.

The most commonly types of gemstones found in Mbeere include:

  1. Sapphire
  2. Blue and Green Aquamarine
  3. Red, Blue & Green Garnets
  4. Mica and many others

Kirigo hill is said to contain graphite and some diamonds. There are also magnesites, graphites and pegmites in other areas. Apparently, mining of gemstones in this area is primarily done by hand by the local artisans. It has been difficult to gather information regarding the existence of these precious stones since the entire process is done informally. It is not easy to establish the quantities of gemstones mined, their value, sales, clientele etc. There is therefore need to develop exploration and mining of gemstones in the County.

Quartz and Granite Processing in Embu County

Quartz is transparent or translucent rock that has many variants and covers a large area of the County particularly in the rocky areas. The most common types of quartz found in Mbeere include; smoky quartz, amethyst, milky quartz and rose quartz. It can be used for decorating buildings or for hard stone carvings.

Granite is a light-coloured igneous rock with large grains and is composed mainly of quartz and feldspar with minor amounts of micas, amphiboles and other minerals. This mineral composition gives granite its characteristic red, pink, white or gray colour with dark mineral grains visible throughout the rock. Granite is usually massive, tough, hard and thus one of the most popular building materials. It was used in antiquity for construction of both interior and exterior applications and is very durable.

Granite dimension stone is used in buildings, bridges, paving, monuments and other exterior projects. Polished granite slabs and tiles are used for kitchen countertops, tile floors, stair treads and other design elements. Granite is a prestige material used in projects to produce impressions of elegance and quality. Despite this immense commercial value, the two rocks (Quartz and Granite) in Embu County remain largely untapped.

Gravel and Pebbles in Embu County

Gravel (Kagoto) are small stone aggregates or rock fragments that have a general particle size ranging from granular gravel which is about 2 mm – 4 mm, pebble gravel which ranges 4mm – 64mm mean diameter. Gravel is an important commercial product with a number of applications. Construction of buildings, roads and other infrastructure require large quantities of gravel. There are abundant deposits of naturally occurring gravel in most parts of Embu County thus, a great potential to commercialize gravel in this area to boost construction industry and generate revenue.

Pebbles (ngengecu) can be found in almost all river beds in Embu County. They are naturally occurring, smooth, rounded stones measuring about 4mm – 64mm in size. They come in various colours and texture and can have streaks of quartz and different coloured sedimentary rocks. The most common colours of river pebbles include: Grey, black, brown, white and green. Owing to their beauty, they are mainly used to decorate buildings, gardens, landscaping and paved surfaces. They can also be polished and sold in curio shops or used to make items such as office paper weights.

Ballast Processing in Embu County

Ballast processing has a lot of potential in Embu County as extensive patches of volcanic rocks that weather easily are found in many places. They include: phonolites and basalts which are exploited for aggregates in areas around Rwika. Tuffs are found in Kamutungi, Munyori, Nganduri and Ngiori in Gachoka while in Siakago they are found at Kwamuguku quarries.

Stone chips processing (ballast) is also commercially done at Riamikuyu near Ishiara and Makengi areas in Embu,and Makutano in Mwea. Most of the areas in the county have stones which could be crashed for construction industry but this potential has not been fully exploited.

The People of Embu County

Embu County has a population of 516,212 (49% – male and 51% – female), according to the 2009 National census. Although the county is named after the indigenous Aembu people, other tribes call it home; Mbeere, Kamba and Kikuyu.

Aembu – The Aembu people, who share key cultural and traditional values with the Kikuyu and Meru are mainly farmers. Many of them live in the well-watered northern side around Runyenjes, Embu and Manyatta towns. Tea and coffee are the community’s main cash crops. They also grow food crops such as maize, beans, sorghum, cassava, millet, horticultural crops and substantial dairy keeping.

Mbeere – Mbeere people are to be found around Siakago, Ishiara, Kanyuambora and Kiritiri towns. They mostly practice small scale farming, bee keeping and livestock rearing. Ishiara market is in particular popular for being the largest goat market in the region. Living on the lower side with relatively low rainfall, Mbeeres grows cash crops such as cotton and food crops such as maize, cow peas, beans, pigeon peas and green grams.

Kamba – The Akamba people live in lower parts of Embu County around Makima. While they are natively known for their carving and basketry skills, Kambas also do a lot of subsistence farming, bee keeping and goat rearing in Embu. Some of the crops growing in the area include cowpeas, green grams, sorghum, millet among others.

Kikuyu – The Kikuyu people living in Embu County are mainly traders, business people and civil servants working in government corporations and institutions. Apart from being skillful in entrepreneurship, the Kikuyus also like farming and a number of them have bought land and settled in the peripheries of Embu town.

Embu Culture, Traditions, Beliefs and Religion

The Aembu believed that their god, ‘Ngai’, lived on the top of Mount Kenya. Prayers and sacrifices were traditionally made to this god. However, today, majority of Embu and Mbeere people are Christians.

Christianity entered Embu around the same time the British jurisdiction was established in 1906.
The year 1912, Church Missionary Society (Anglican Church) built the first church at Kigari in Embu County. This mission served the entire Embu and Mbeere later opening other missions such as Karungu in Embu, Kiritiri and Kanyuambora in Mbeere.

In 1922, the Catholic Church was founded when the “White Fathers” as they were then called, set up the first Catholic mission in Ngoire near Makengi in Embu. They later opened Catholic missions in Kyeni, Kevote in Embu and Siakago in Mbeere. Since then, both the Anglican and Catholic Churches have dominated in Embu and Mbeere. Similarly, other Christian denominations were set up hence various Christian churches have a presence in Embu County.

In Embu and Mbeere, there are Cathedrals and various Christian churches having the largest as St. Peter and Paul Cathedral based at Karurina near Embu town. It is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Embu. The cathedral displays a unique African-inspired design through its rooftop modeled in the shape of the peaks of Mt. Kenya. The Anglican Diocese of Embu has its headquarters at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Embu town. Furthermore, another Anglican cathedral is based at Siakago and is the headquarters of Mbeere diocese.

The Presbyterian Church of East Africa (P.C.E.A) has its central cathedral in Blue Valley, a suburb in Embu town. Other main stream churches such as the Salvation Army and African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa (A.I.P.C.A) also have their headquarters in Embu town. There are also numerous evangelical churches such as Winners Chapel, Deliverance Church, Pentecostal Church, Full Gospel church and many others. .


There are a few Muslims residing mainly in major towns of the County however their population is growing steadily. Some of the mosques in Embu town are: Jamia Mosque located close to Embu Municipal Stadium, others are in Majengo, Dallas and Majimbo estates in Embu, at the Prisons and within the Administration Police base. Outside Embu town, there are mosques at Siakago, Kiambere and Runyenjes towns

Aembu Culture

The Embu and Mbeere tribes share many common customs and rituals. Traditionally, they had jointly owned sacred places called Matiiri. Circumcision is an important rite of passage for boys in Embu County just like most other bantu tribes.

Cultural Centres in Embu County

Despite the inherent potential, there are only three cultural centres developed in Embu County.

These are:

Embu Cultural Centre

This is a Government institution set up by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage that was started in the 1990s. The centre coordinates cultural activities in the entire county. It has buildings that host meeting halls and offices.

The staff are involved mostly in promotion of herbal medicine and the centre coordinates a network of herbal medicine stakeholders. The centre has plans to develop a botanical garden, build an amphitheatre, a herbal clinic, museum, art gallery and a curio shop.

Embu Cultural Village

This cultural village is located at the home of Simon Njururi near Kibugu market in Embu. It can be accessed from Kibugu-Nguviu road. Mr. Njururi is an artist, collector, sculptor and a curator and his quite passionate about his rare collection of art and cultural artifacts.

He has won several national awards and has also exhibited internationally. He has built some Embu traditional huts and continues to improve on the cultural aspects of his museum.

Some of the artefacts in his collection include:

  1. gourds (inya) of various types and uses (kagina, muceema, mbuva, mbuthu),
  2. calabashes (ciuga) for different uses,
  3. traditional weapons such as knives (mviu),
  4. spear (itumu), bow (uta), shield (ngo) and arrows (migwi).

Similarly, there are several musical instruments and play items. It is such an ideal centre for tourism and fine art.

Evurori Multicultural Centre

This centre is based at Njarange village near Ishiara market in Mbeere, Embu. The centre was started by an individual by name, Joseph Kabiero Ndwiga, a retired teacher who has a great enthusiasm for preserving culture.

The centre is registered as a group by the Registrar of Societies.

The members have a collection of 78 artefacts all displayed at the Centre such as:

  1. a grain silo (gitu or mururu),
  2. a rare left handed snail shell (ng’ari) which is traditionally believed to bring long life to those who hold it.
  3. there are also nests of young and small birds (ntiro or ndiro) as well as weaver bird nest (kiamba kia nthoonjo).
  4. Other items at this centre include:
  5. a bird trap (ikerenge),
  6. squirrel trap (ivari) and
  7. a traditional metal trap (gitengu) used to trap hyenas.

There are also:

  1. traditional woven bags carried by women (ciondo),
  2. bags carried by old men (ithatwa or mbooro ya muthuri),
  3. traditionally woven tray (gitararu kia muugu),
  4. spear (itumu),
  5. bow and arrows (uta na migwi) and their sheath (thiaka),
  6. musical instruments including traditional mbeere drums (ngutha), dancing bells (ciigamba), blowing horns (coro), black smith pipes (ngerwa na muugua), head gears worn during dances (ngovia cia ngoroi) and also traditional clothing (turithi) among others.

The centre boasts of a garden where traditional crops such as cowpeas, sorghum, millet, medicinal shrubs and herbs are grown.

The centre has opened a liaison office at Ishiara market to boost tourism and educational roles as it upholds conservation of traditional artefacts, social ideals and music.

Notable Personalities in Embu County

Some of the famous people from Embu county include, Governor Martin Wambora, Head of Catholic Church in Kenya Archbishop Cardinal John Njue, former long serving cabinet minister Jeremiah Nyagah, Safari Rally champion Patrick Njiru and the current Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi.

 Facts About Embu County

Area (Km 2): 2,818 Km 2
 Climate/Weather: The temperature ranges from a minimum of 12 °C to a maximum of 27.0 °C. The average annual rainfall is 1495mm.
Road Network: Bitumen Surface (120 Km), Gravel Surface (402 Km), Earth Surface (914.3 Km)
 Key National Monument(s): None

 Embu County Population – Population of Embu County

Population: 543,221 (Male – 267,609, Female – 275,612)
Population Density: 193 people/km2
 National Percentage: 1.34 %
 Annual Growth Rate: 1.7 % (Embu) 3.0 % (Mbeere)
Population Density per Consituency;

  • Manyatta – 605 People/ Km2
  • Runyejes – 590 People/ Km2
  • Mbeere North – 122 People/ km2
  • Mbeere South – 104/ Km2

 Age Distribution:

  • 1-5 Years (2.5% of total population)
  • 6- 13 Years (19.8% of total population)
  • 14-17 years (8.4% of total population)
  • 15-29 years (27.3% of the total population)
  • 15-64years (57.2% of total population)

 Number of Households: 131,683
Embu County

 Government of Embu County

 County Capital: Embu Town (proposed)
 Number of Constituencies (2010): 4 (Gachoka, Manyatta, Runyenjes, Siakago)
Registered Voters: 225,712
National percentage: 1.8 %
 Number of Districts (2009): 2 (Embu, Mbeere)
Number of Local Authorities (2010): 4 (Embu and Runyenjes Municipal Councils, County Councils of Embu and Mbeere)

 Economy of Embu County

 Poverty Level: 40.8 %
 Age Dependency Ratio: 100:74.7
Resources: Wildlife, Livestock, Arable Land, Water, Pasture, Forests, Hills
 Tourist Attractions: Waterfalls, Kimiriri and Karue Hills
 Financial Services: 8 Commercial Banks, 15 Micro-Finance
 Main Economic Activities/industries: Dairy Farming, Coffee, Tea, Pyrethrum, Commercial Businesses
 Agricultural products: Maize, Beans, Yams, Cassava, Millet, Sorghum, Bananas, Livestock Products

 Education in Embu County

 Number of Institutions (2007): Primary (494), Secondary (147)
 Primary: Enrolment (125,418)
 Teacher to Pupil Ratio: 1:32 (Public Schools)
 Secondary: Enrolment (27,173)
 Teacher to Pupil Ratio: 1:23 (Public Schools)
 Tertiary: Over 15 (Includes a University Affiliate College, Youth Polytechnics, Teacher Training Colleges, Technical Colleges, and Several Commercial Colleges)
 Adult Literacy Classes: Enrolment; Over 1,500

 Health in Embu County

 Health Facilities: 133 – Provincial General Hospital (1), District Hospitals (2), Sub- District Hospitals (2), Dispensaries (74), Health Centres (12), Medical Clinics (34), Nursing Homes (2), Maternity Home (1), Others (5)
Doctor to Population Ratio: 1:10,474 (Embu), 1:57,000 (Mbeere)
 Infant Mortality Rates: 56/1000 (Embu), 71/1000 (Mbeere)
 Under Five Mortality Rates: 6/1000 (Embu), 119/1000 (Mbeere)
 Prevalent Diseases: Malaria, URTI, Skin Diseases, Intestinal Worms, Eye Infections, Diarrhoea
 Notable Hospitals: Embu Provincial General Hospital, Mbeere District Hospital, Runyenjes District Hospital

Embu County News

For news and events visit the Embu County website at www.embu.go.ke

Embu County Contacts

Telephone No.
+254 68 30686
+254 68 30656
Mobile No.
+254 771 204 003
+254 703 192 924
Email Address

Embu County Website


Embu County Video