David Ndii Biography, Education, Career & Personal Life

David Ndii Biography, Education, Career & Personal Life
Prof. David Ndii In A Past Press Conference Image/Courtesy

He is a well known Kenyan economist and chief critic of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his handshake ‘brother’ Raila Odinga. One can also classify him as a crusader against corruption. A free digital platform named Richtopia which provides content on finance and economics once ranked him 30th among the 100 most influential economists in the world. 

Apart from being an economist, he is known for his stand on thelegalization of marijuana. He revealed that while in high school, he smoked marijuana but that did not stop him from topping in his class during his O level examination. 

“Marijuana was criminalized by colonialists. It follows that if we decriminalize it , the crime of smoking bhang will cease to exist. I smoked bhang occasionally in secondary school (age 12-16), still topped my class in O-Level exams,” he once tweeted. 

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For his O-Level, he attended Nyahururu High School before proceeding to Kangaru school in Embu county. 

He got his Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Nairobi and then proceeded to get a Master’s in the same University. Ndii is also an alumni of Oxford University where he got his PHD. 


Ndii has worked in a number of high profile jobs in Kenya and beyond.

During the Kibaki administration, he was an advisor on economic recovery of the country. He then took up the same role in NASA. For a number of years, he was the chief strategist for the National Super Alliance. 

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He served as technical advisor on Public Finance to the Committee of Experts and also worked as economic advisor to the president of Rwanda. He also worked for Equity bank as a chief Economist and with the world bank as an economist. 

By 2017, he was a Rhodes scholar and Eisenhower fellow and also managing director of Africa Economics, which is a consulting firm. 

On a number of occasions, he has written a number of open letters and tweets criticizing the government’s economic strategies including the unmitigated borrowing of loans. His criticism of the government endeared him to the opposition. At one point, he was appointed by the opposition coalition to lead the proposed  assembly that was in charge of swearing in Raila Odinga as the people’s president a few years ago. 

One time, he was even barred from accessing the Technical University of Mombasa for security reasons.

Personal Life

The well known economist is married to Mwende Gatabaki and the two are said to have a daughter.


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