Kitui is a town in Kenya, 180 kilometres east of Nairobi and 105 kilometres east of Machakos. Due to political reforms, Kitui is now the headquarters of Kitui County, which covers a larger area than the former Kitui District did. As a consequence, the city has become a natural meeting point for politicians and businessmen therefore, most of the hotels are expanding. In addition, travellers have noted that Kitui is a suitable resting place on the way from Mount Kenya to Mombasa.
The name Kitui means â€˜a place where iron goods are madeâ€™. The Kamba iron-smiths who settled in the county many years before the colonial period are the ones who named the area Kitui.
Kitui had a population of 155,896 in 2009 making it the 12th largest urban centre in Kenya in terms of population. It is the largest urban centre in the county followed by Mwingi. A large majority of the residents belong to the Kamba, a Bantu people. The Kamba of Kenya speak the Bantu Kamba language (Kikamba) as a mother tongue.
Kitui is widely known in Kenya for producing a majority of the country's top legal minds. These include former Chief Justices Kitili Maluki Mwendwa (1968-1971) and Dr. Willy Mutunga (2011-2016), State University of New York (SUNY) Distinguished Professor Makau W. Mutua, and former Law Society of Kenya Chairman, Eric Mutua.
Kitui is also widely known in Kenya for its powerful traditional doctors and is therefore a key destination for those seeking these services. The best-known witch doctor in Ukambani is the late Dr Kilungya Mwinzila, who comes from Mbitini.
The major secondary schools around Kitui town are Kitui School, St. Charles Lwanga High School, Mulango Girls' High School, St. Angela's High School, St. Ursula Tungutu Girls Secondary School, Chuluni Girls' Secondary School and St. Aquinas Kalawa Boys' Secondary School. The major public primary schools in Kitui town include Central Primary School and Muslim Primary School. There are also several private schools in the Kitui town.
The cuisine in Kitui consists largely of traditional African dishes. Chapati (almost like tortillas), ugali, isyo (well-seasoned mix of beans/peas and maize, sometimes with pumpkin and leafy vegetables added), or rice served with goat meat, chicken, and/or cooked vegetable stew are common dishes.