“When the Missionaries arrived, the Africans had the land and the Missionaries had the Bible. They taught how to pray with our eyes closed. When we opened them, they had the land and we had the Bible.” ― Jomo Kenyatta
Mzee (Elder) Jomo Kenyatta, First President of Kenya and Pan-Africanist

Jomo Kenyatta (~1889 – 22 August 1978) was a carpenter turned intellectual who became the first president of Kenya. He was freedom fighter, great Pan-Africanist, film actor and author of many books. Kikuyu-born Mzee Kenyatta was the leader of Kenya from independence in 1963 to his death in 1978, serving first as Prime Minister (1963–64) and then as President (1964–78). He is considered the founding father of the Kenyan nation. He is also the father of Kenya's fourth and current President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Jomo Kenyatta holding his son, Uhuru Kenyatta's hand in November 15, 1965. Uhuru is the current president of Kenya

Mzee Kenyatta is acclaimed from all quarters of the world as a true son of Africa, a visionary leader. During his tenure, Kenya enjoyed political stability, and economic progress. In 1974, he declared free primary education up to primary grade 4.He is also remembered for urging Kenyans to preserve their culture and heritage. Very few people are aware that Jomo Kenyatta acted in the movie Sanders of the River (1934) as an extra. The movie was.directed by Alexander Korda and starring Paul Robeson.

As a true Pan-Africanist is reported that on Friday, October 24 1969, Jomo Kenyatta during his tour on Western Province to familiarise himself with the development in the province, upon reaching Nyanza and was shown Broderick Falls as a major key attraction became angry that after independence of Kenya the prominent tourist spots continued to bear names of foreigners. He told the people "“I want to tell people of Western Province that I felt ashamed trying to pronounce….Bro…bro…bro…derick falls. These are names reflecting servitude…Why can’t you look for better local names with local content, names we know of their origin?” There and then, the President issued a directive that both the leaders and locals look for a substitute name for the tourist feature.
He caused laughter when he asked: “Which Luhya man was called Broderick? Broderick was whose relative?  A name is very important for identity. Which foreigner adopts your African names?   If you want to domineer someone, conquer his intellect first and you will suppress him wholly.”
Following this directive, many roads bearing colonial names were changed. Plaques bearing names of colonial masters were similarly removed and the names changed.
Mzee Jomo Kenyatta

For his unyielding fighting spirit Kenyatta was described by former governor of Kenya Sir Patrick Renison as "the African leader to darkness and death". He also shown the magnanimity of Africans and their willingness to forgive and forge ahead when after gaining independence he said although his government aimed to free itself from British colonialism, it would not try to avenge past injustices. "We are not to look to the past - racial bitterness, the denial of fundamental rights, the suppression of our culture... Let there be forgiveness". Kenyatta is conventionally seen as a consummate political fixer, a ‘prince’ rather than an ideological ‘prophet’ like his neighbour Nyerere of Tanzania. I wish to propose a more ideological Kenyatta. I do so by paying more attention to intellectual biography, and indeed to African theology and political thought, than is normal in African historiography.(Lonsdale, 2000).
Two African Baobabs: Mzee Jomo Kenyatta of Kenya and Mwalimu Julius Nyerere of Tanzania

Jomo Kenyatta`s birth and his ethnic ancestry is a controversial issue despite the widely held knowledge that he was born into Kikuyu tribe. There are some Kenyan`s like Weldon Oriop Kirui, a researcher and Radio Journalist in Nairobi who claim Kenyatta`s father was a Kalenjin. Kirui posited that "Mzee Jomo Kenyatta is...a Kipsigis who grew up among the Kikuyu." However, the general accepted fact is that, Jomo Kenyatta was born in an unknown month and day in 1889 at  Ng'enda village, Gatundu Division, Kiambu in Kenya to a Kikuyu  father Ngengi wa Muigai and mother, Wamboi . He was named Kamau Wa Ngengi. His father made an early departure out of this world when Kamau (Kenyatta) was still an infant. The name of Kenyatta`s father according to Kirui was rather "Chebochok arap Boiso" one of the sons of "the great Nandi Oloibon Kipnyolei arap Turugat (Simbolei)," who stayed in Londiani in Kericho District."
                            Jomo Kenyatta and his family

When young Kamau`s father died, in tandem with customs he was inherited by his uncle Ngengi, the younger brother of his father. His mother also became the wife of his uncle and Jomo was given the name Kamau Wa Ngengi. Kamau`s mother had a child named James Muigai, with his uncle and after some feuds between the parents, his mother returned to her parents where she passed away. On this account, Kirui posit that " Kamau’s mother Wamboi is reported to have been a widow who used to herd cattle in Londiani. She later sought employment in European farms in Central Province. While in Kikuyu land, Wamboi got married to Muigai who is wrongly believed to have been Kenyatta’s father. After sometime, Muigai divorced Wamboi “for having a child from Lumbwa (kipsigis) people. She went back to work in European farms."
Swearing of Jomo Kenyatta as a president of Kenya

 After her mother`s demise young Kamau moved from Ng'enda for Muthiga to live with his grandfather Kingu wa Magana who was a fortune teller and medicine man. He took interest in Agikuyu culture and customs and used to assist his grandfather in the practice of medicine.
       Jomo Kenyatta walking with Nigerian military ruler, Gen Yakubu Gowon

In 1909, Kamau joined Church of Scotland Mission, Thogoto, a Kikuyu town, 12-miles north-west of Nairobi.  He studied amongst other subjects: the Bible, English, mathematics and carpentry. He paid the school fees by working as a houseboy and cook for a white settler living nearby.
Young Jomo Kenyatta as a student. courtesy:

In 1912 he finished elementary school and became an apprentice carpenter. In 1913 he was circumcised at Nyogara stream near Thogoto Mission to become member of Kihiu Mwigi/Mebengi age group.
In 1914,he was baptized a Christian and given the name John Peter which he changed to Johnstone Kamau. He left the mission later that year to seek employment.
Young and bare-footed Jomo Kenyatta after his baptism. courtesy:

He first worked as an apprentice carpenter on a sisal farm in Thika, under the tutelage of John Cook, who had been in charge of the building programme at Thogoto.
During the First World War, when the British government was forcefully conscripting Africans into the army, Kenyatta took refuge in Narok where he lived with Maasai relatives and worked as a clerk for an Asian trader. After the war, he served as a storekeeper to a European firm and this time, he began wearing his beaded belt Kinyatta. On this account and how Kenyatta changed his Kikuyu Kamau Wa Ngengi name, Kenyan Journalist Kirui writes "In 1913, all brothers of Koitalel arap Samoei were rounded up and banished to Central Province for opposing the evil plans of the white man. They were Kipchomber arap Koilegen (Kochich-lem), arap Boiso (Kenyatta`s father) and Kibuigut. They were detained in Nyeri and Forth Hall now Maragwa.....

 Mzee Jomo Kenyatta performing bush colonialist clash war dance with former fighters. courtesy:

When arap Koilegen was about to die in July 1916, he summoned Kenyatta to his house for briefing. Kenyatta was then a student at Thogoto Mission School. He gave him a beaded belt known in Kalenjin as Kenyattet, a container for holding stuff (tobacco), a flywhisk and a monkey skin called Siombuut. He then told Kenyatta that when the white men go back to Britain he would lead the nation. He instructed him to drop Kikuyu names, Peter Kamau which he did. After that he instructed him to go to Loita and seek further advice from Maasai Laibons and in particular Ole Mokompo who died in the early 70s.
After being blessed by the Oloibon, he was told, “Shomo Kenyatta!” i.e. go with this belt.Through divive power, Kenyatta thought his name was Jomo Kenyatta. Jomo is devived from Maasai verb Shomo arap Bosio, Kenyatta’s father died in 1929 after being tortured by the white man. When he died, Kenyatta was schooling in London. His demise shocked Kenyatta so much that for three days, Kenyatta was indoors crying and mourning the death of arap Bosio. Why then mourn arap Boisio!?"
Jomo Kenyatta and Idi Amin

In 1919 Kenyatta married Grace Wahu, under ceremonial Kikuyu customs. When Grace got pregnant, his church elders ordered him to get married before a European magistrate, and undertake the appropriate church rites. On 20 November 1920 Kamau's (Kenyatta`s) first son Peter Muigai, was born and later a daughter, Margaret Wambui. Kenyatta then served as an interpreter in the Nairobi High Court, and ran a store out of his Dagoretti home during this period. He eventually married Grace Wahu in a civil ceremony in 1922. It must be noted that though Kenyatta owned a shamba (farm) and his house at Dagoretti, he preferred to live closer to town at Kilimani in a hut and cycled home during weekends. Grace Wahu lived in the Dagoretti home until her death in April 2007 at the age of around 100.
Kenyatta began working again, as a store clerk and water-meter reader for the Nairobi Municipal Council Public Works Department, once again under John Cook who was the Water Superintendent. His salary was about Kenya shillings 250.00 per month. Meter reading helped him meet many Kenyan-Asians at their homes who would become important allies later on in his political life.
He entered politics after taking interest in the political activities of James Beauttah and Joseph Kang'ethe the leaders of the Kikuyu Central Association (KCA). He joined KCA in 1924 and rose up the ranks of the association. By 1926, he was the secretary of KCA. He was also chosen to represent the Kikuyu land problems before the Hilton Young Commission in Nairobi. This marked the beginning of his career in politics.
Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah hugs Mzee Jomo Kenyatta at Nairobi, Kenya. Circa 1964. courtesy:

In 1928, he published a Gikuyu weekly newspaper, Muigwithania (Reconciler) that dealt with the Kikuyu culture, unity of all sections of the Kikuyu and new farming methods. The paper which was edited by Kenyatta was supported by an Asian-owned printing press, had a mild and unassuming tone, and was tolerated by the colonial government. As a result of his advocacy work by champion the cause of his Kikuyu people through his writings, he chosen to represent the Kikuyu land problems before the Hilton Young Commission in Nairobi. This marked the beginning of his career in politics.
From Left to Right: Fred Kubai, Laurence Sagini, Tom Mboya, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, Achieng Oneko and James Gichuru at State house,Nairobi. Circa 1963

In 1929 the KCA sent Kenyatta to London to lobby on its behalf with regards to Kikuyu tribal land affairs. Using the name Johnstone Kenyatta, he published articles and letters to the editor in The Times and the Manchester Guardian. He returned to Kenya on 24 September 1930 and was welcomed at Mombasa by his wife Wahu and James Beauttah. He then took part, on the side of traditionalists, in the debate on the issue of female genital mutilation of girls. He later worked for Kikuyu Independent Schools in Githunguri
Kenyatta relocated to London in 1931 to present a written petition to parliament but ended up enrolling in Woodbrooke Quaker College in Birmingham. Discouraged by the lack of official response to the land claims he was putting forward, he began an association with British Communists, who published articles he wrote in their publications. Kenyatta met India's Mahatma Gandhi in November 1932. After giving evidence before the Morris Carter Commission, he proceeded to Moscow to study Economics briefly at the Comintern School, KUTVU (University of the Toilers of the East) at the invitation of  George Padmore, a radical West Indian. He was forced to return to Britain by 1933 when Padmore fell out with the Russians because "the Soviet Union (worried about Hitler's growing power and seeing Britain and France as potential allies) withdrew its support for the movement against British and French colonial rule in Africa." Back to England, Kenyatta continued with political campaigns against imperialism in Africa and his country.

                               Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and Hastings Banda of Malawi

In 1934, Kenyatta enrolled at University College London and from 1935 studied social anthropology under Bronisław Malinowski at the London School of Economics (LSE). He was an active member of the International African Service Bureau, a pan-Africanist, anti-colonial organisation that had formed around former international communist leader George Padmore, who had also become disillusioned with the Soviet Union and himself moved to London. Kenyatta read the draft of the Kenya section of Padmore's new book, How Britain Rules Africa (1936). He taught Gikuyu at the University College, London and also wrote a book on the Kikuyu language in 1937 and with the editorial help of an English editor named Dinah Stock who became a close friend, Kenyatta published his own book, Facing Mount Kenya (his revised LSE thesis), in 1938 under his new name, Jomo Kenyatta. The name Jomo means "burning spear."
After the World War II, he wrote a pamphlet (with some content contributed by Padmore), Kenya: The Land of Conflict, published by the International African Service Bureau under the imprint Panaf Service. The Land of Conflict pamphlet was during the gold rush in Kenya in which the land in Kakamega reserve was being distributed to settlers, something which angered Kenyatta causing him to speak about Britain's injustice. It is for this reason that the British dubbed him a communist.
 Jomo Kenyatta and Aga Khan. Circa 1972

During this period, Kenyatta was an active member of a group of African, Caribbean and American intellectuals who included Dudley Thompson, George Padmore, C.L.R. James, Eric Williams, W.A. Wallace Johnson, Paul Robeson and Ralph Bunche. During his presidency, a number of streets in Nairobi were named after those early black-emancipation intellectuals.
Kenyatta acted as an extra in the film Sanders of the River (1934), directed by Alexander Korda and starring Paul Robeson.
During World War II, he worked as a labourer at an English farm in Sussex, and lectured on Africa for the Workers' Educational Association.
Mzee Jomo Kenyatta holding his son Peter Magana born in 1943 with his English wife, Edna Clarke. Courtesy :

In 1942, he married an Englishwoman, Edna Clarke. He also published My People of Kikuyu and The Life of Chief Wang'ombe, a history shading into legend. Edna gave birth to their son, Peter Magana, in 1943.
In 1945, with other prominent African nationalist figures, such as Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Kenyatta helped organise the fifth Pan-African Congress held in Britain

In 1946 Kenyatta returned to Kenya after almost 15 years hibernation in abroad. He married for the third time, to Grace Wanjiku, Senior Chief Koinange's daughter, and sister to Mbiyu Koinange  (who later became a lifelong confidant and was one of the most powerful politicians during Kenyatta's presidency).
Kenyatta then went into teaching, becoming principal of Kenya Teachers College Githunguri.
In 1947, he was elected president of the Kenya African Union (KAU). He began to receive death threats from white settlers after his election.
From 1948 to 1951 he toured and lectured around the country condemning idleness, robbery, urging hard work while campaigning for the return of land given to white settlers and for independence within three years.
His wife, Grace Wanjiku, died in childbirth in 1950 as she gave birth to daughter Jane Wambui, who survived.
In 1951 Kenyatta married Ngina Muhoho, daughter of Chief Muhoho. She was popularly referred to as Mama Ngina and was independent Kenya's First Lady, when Kenyatta was elected President.
Mrs. Jomo Kenyatta standing in front of her new home. Circa 1961 (Photo by Terrence Spencer//Time Life Pictures/Getty Images)

The Mau Mau Rebellion began in 1951 and KAU was banned, and a state of emergency was declared on 20 October 1952
Kenyatta was arrested in October 1952 and indicted with five others on the charges of "managing and being a member" of the Mau Mau Society, a radical anti-colonial movement engaged in rebellion against Kenya's British rulers. The accused were known as the "Kapenguria Six".

The "Kapenguria Six". Jomo Kenyatta Posing with Five of His Staff Members accused of being Mau Mau leaders During Trial .

The trial lasted five months: Rawson Macharia, the main prosecution witness, turned out to have perjured himself; the judge—who had only recently been awarded an unusually large pension, and who maintained secret contact with the then colonial Governor of Kenya Evelyn Baring during the trial—was openly hostile to the defendants' cause.

Jomo Kenyatta (second right) is welcomed in Gatundu by Njoroge Mungai, Joseph Mathenge and Kariuki Njiiri (right) after his release from Kapenguria. Courtesy James Mwangi.

The defence, led by British barrister D.N. Pritt, argued that the white settlers were trying to scapegoat Kenyatta and that there was no evidence tying him to the Mau Mau. The court sentenced Kenyatta on 8 April 1953 to seven years' imprisonment with hard labour and indefinite restriction thereafter. The subsequent appeal was refused by the British Privy Council in 1954.
Kenyatta remained in prison until 1959, after which he was detained in Lodwar, a remote part of Kenya.
The state of emergency was lifted on 12 January 1960.
On 28 February 1961, a public meeting of 25,000 in Nairobi demanded his release. On 15 April 1960, over a million signatures for a plea to release him were presented to the Governor. On 14 May 1960, he was elected KANU President in absentia. On 23 March 1961, Kenyan leaders, including Daniel arap Moi, later his longtime Vice President and successor as president, visited him at Lodwar. On 11 April 1961, he was moved to Maralal with daughter Margaret where he met world press for the first time in eight years. On 14 August 1961, he was released and brought to Gatundu to a hero's welcome.

                       Struggle for independence: Kenyatta and his people

While contemporary opinion linked Kenyatta with the Mau Mau, historians have questioned his alleged leadership of the radical movement. Kenyatta was in truth a political moderate. His marriage of Colonial Chief's daughters, his post independence Kikuyu allies mainly being former colonial collaborators (though also from his tribe), and his short shrift treatment of former Mau Mau fighters after he came to power, all strongly suggest he had scant regard for the Mau Mau.

Prime Minister Jomo Kenyatta with "Field Marshal" Mwariama, a Mau Mau leader who came to Kenyatta's home with a group of followers after the Prime Minister had promised amnesty to all rebels who left hiding by December 16th. Mwariama has undertaken that he and his substatial body of followers will surrender and leave their forest hiding places now that the colony is about to become independent. Circa 10 December 1963. © Bettmann/CORBIS

Prior to Kenya`s independence in October 28, 1961, Kenyatta was admitted into the Legislative Council after his release in 1961, after Kariuki Njiiri (son of late Chief Njiiri) gave up his Kigumo seat for him.
In 1961 and 1962, he led the KANU delegation to first and second Lancaster Conference in London where Kenya's independence constitution was negotiated.
Secretary of State for Colonies Mr. Duncan Sandys greets Kenya’s Prime Minister Mzee Jomo Kenyatta at Lancaster House, London on September 25, 1963.
Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and Mr. Duncan Sandys: Secretary of State for Colonies Mr. Duncan Sandys greets Kenya’s Prime Minister Mzee Jomo Kenyatta at Lancaster House, London on September 25, 1963.

Elections were then held in May 1963, pitting Kenyatta's KANU (Kenya African National Union- which advocated for Kenya to be a unitary state) against KADU (Kenya African Democratic Union - which advocated for Kenya to be an ethnic-federal state). KANU beat KADU by winning 83 seats out of 124. On 1 June 1963, Mzee Kenyatta became prime minister of the autonomous Kenyan government. After independence, Queen Elizabeth II remained as Head of State (after Independence, styled as Queen of Kenya), represented by a Governor-General. He consistently asked white settlers not to leave Kenya and supported reconciliation.
Waving his ‘wisk’ the newly-elected Premier of Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta (R, foreground), greeted throngs of cheering citizens as he rode through the streets of Nairobi. Accompanying Kenyatta are Tom Mboya (L), Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs; A. Oginga Odinga, Minister for Home Affairs; and James S. Gichuru, Minister for Finance. The motorcade was part of the National Holiday celebrations which marked the start of internal self-government for the African nation.”  veune: Nairobi, Kenya. Circa 1963Photo: © Bettmann/ CORBIS

On 1 June 1964, had Parliament amend the Constitution to make Kenya a republic. The office of prime minister was replaced by a president with wide executive and legislative powers. Elected by the National Assembly, he was head of State, head of Government and Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces. Under the provisions of the amendment, Kenyatta automatically became president.

   Jomo kenyatta walks majestically with Governor Macdonald during independence day celebration at Uhuru stadium. Courtesy :

His policy was that of continuity and gradual Africanisation of the government, keeping many colonial civil servants in their old jobs as they were gradually replaced by Kenyans. He asked for British troops' help against Somali rebels, Shiftas, in the northeast and in ending an army mutiny in Nairobi in January 1964.
On 10 November 1964, KADU officially dissolved and its representatives joined KANU, forming a single party.

Kenyatta was re-elected un-opposed in 1966, and the next year had the Constitution amended to expand his powers. This term featured border conflicts with Somalia, and more political opposition. He consolidated his power greatly, and placed several of his Kikuyu tribesmen in most of the powerful state and security offices and posts. State security forces harassed dissidents and were suspected of complicity in several murders of prominent personalities deemed as threats to his regime, including Pio Gama Pinto, Tom Mboya and J.M. Kariuki. MP and Lawyer C.M.G. Argwings-Kodhek and former Kadu Leader and minister Ronald Ngala, also died in suspicious car accidents.
In 1968 he published his biography Suffering Without Bitterness.
Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and celebrated Kenyan intellectual and politicianTom Mboya

In the 1969 elections, Kenyatta banned the only other party, the Kenya People's Union (formed and led by his former vice president, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga who had been forced to quit KANU along with his left leaning allies), detained its leaders, and called elections in which only KANU was allowed to participate. For all intents and purposes, Kenya was now a one-party state.

Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and his vice president Jaramogi Oginga Odinga. C::

On 29 January 1970 he was sworn in as President for a further term. For the remainder of his presidency, Kenyatta held complete political control of the country. He made use of detention, appeals to ethnic loyalties, and careful appointment of government jobs to maintain his commanding position in Kenya’s political system. However, as the 1970s wore on, advancing age kept him from the day-to-day management of government affairs. He intervened only when necessary to settle disputed issues. His relative isolation resulted in increasing domination of Kenya’s affairs by well-connected Kikuyu who acquired great wealth as a result.
Kenyatta was re-elected as President in 1974, again as the only candidate. On 5 Nov 1974, he was sworn in as President for a third term. His increasingly feeble health meant that his inner circle effectively ruled the country, and greatly enriched themselves, in his name. He remained president until his death four years later in 1978.
President Kenyatta suffered a heart attack in 1966 and in the mid-seventies lapse into periodic comas lasting from a few hours to a few days from time to time. In April 1977, then well into his 80s, he suffered a massive heart attack. On 14 August 1978, he hosted his entire family, including his son Peter Magana who flew in from Britain with his family, to a reunion in Mombasa. On 22 August 1978, President Kenyatta died in Mombasa of natural causes attributable to old age. Mzee Jomo Kenyatta was buried on 31 August 1978 in Nairobi in a state funeral at a mausoleum on Parliament grounds.
He was succeeded as President after his death by his vice-president Daniel arap Moi.

Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, as he was popularly known, was an important and influential statesman in Africa. He is credited with leading Kenya to independence and setting up the country as a relatively prosperous capitalist state. He pursued a moderate pro-Western, anti-Communist economic philosophy and foreign policy. He oversaw a peaceful land reform process, oversaw the setting up of the institutions of independent Kenya, and also oversaw Kenya's admission into the United Nations.
However, Kenyatta was not without major flaws, and did also bequeath Kenya some major problems which continue to bedevil the country to date, hindering her development, and threatening her existence as a peaceful unitary multi-ethnic state.
He failed to mould Kenya, being its founding father, into a homogeneous multi-ethnic state. Instead, the country became and remains a de facto confederation of competing tribes.
His authoritarian style, characterized by patronage, favouritism, tribalism and/or nepotism drew criticism and dissent, and set a bad example followed by his successors. He had the Constitution radically amended to expand his powers, consolidating executive power.

He is also criticised for having ruled through a post colonial clique consisting largely of his relatives, other Kikuyus, mostly from his native Kiambu district, Offspring of former colonial chiefs, and African Kikuyu colonial collaborators and their offspring, while giving scant reward to those whom most consider the real fighters for Kenya's independence. This clique became and remains the wealthiest, most powerful and most influential class in Kenya to date.
MAY1963 - Kanu Sweeps To Power - Jumping for joy, Jomo Kenyatta, with Tom Mboya and Mwai Kibaki, celebrate KANU's victory in the independence election.In the 1963 independence election KANU swept to power, and Kenyatta became the country's first African Prime Minister. (Photograph by Drum Photographer BAHA)

Kenyatta has further been criticised for encouraging the culture of wealth accumulation by public officials using the power and influence of their offices, thereby deeply entrenching corruption in Kenya. He is regularly charged with having personally grabbed and accumulated huge land holdings in Kenya. "The regime of Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta, was riddled with land grabbing which was perpetrated by him for his benefit and members of his family...between 1964 and 1966, one-sixth of European settlers’ lands that were intended for settlement of landless and land-scarce Africans were cheaply sold to the then President Kenyatta and his wife Ngina as well as his children...throughout the years of President Kenyatta’s administration, his relatives friends and officials in his administration also benefited from the vice with wanton impunity." a report by Kenya's Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission was recently quoted as saying
His policies are also criticised for leading to a large income and development inequality gap in the country. Development and resource allocation in the country during his reign was seen to have favoured some regions of the country over others. His resettlement of many Kikuyu tribesmen in the country's Rift Valley province is widely considered to have been done unfairly.

Kenyatta had two children from his first marriage with Grace Wahu: son Peter Muigai Kenyatta (born 1920), who later became a deputy minister; and daughter Margaret Kenyatta (born 1928). Margaret served as mayor of Nairobi between 1970–76 and then as Kenya's ambassador to the United Nations from 1976-86. Grace Wahu died in April 2007. His name is always mentioned alongside the likes of Kwame Nkrumah and Julius Nyerere.
He had one son, Peter Magana Kenyatta (born 1943) from his short marriage with Edna Clarke.
His third wife, Grace Wanjiku, died when giving birth in 1950. Daughter Jane Wambui survived.
His fourth wife, the best known due to her role as First Lady, was Ngina Kenyatta (née Muhoho), also known as Mama Ngina. She often accompanied him in public and also has some streets in Nairobi and Mombasa named after her. She bore Kenyatta four children: Christine Wambui (born 1952), Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta (born 1961), Anna Nyokabi (also known as Jeni) and Muhoho Kenyatta (born 1964). Mama Ngina lives quietly as a wealthy widow, and now as President's mother, in Kenya. Uhuru Kenyatta, Mzee Kenyatta's political heir, unsuccessfully vied for the Kenyan presidency as President Moi's preferred successor in 2002, but was elected Kenya's fourth President in 2013 . Muhoho Kenyatta runs the Kenyatta's vast family business but lives out of the public limelight.
Kenyatta was the uncle of Ngethe Njoroge, Kenya's first representative to the United Nations and the great uncle of Tom Morello, the guitarist for Rage Against the Machine. His niece, Beth Mugo, married to a retired ambassador, was an MP, served as Minister for Public Health and is now a nominated Senator.
 Jomo Kenyatta authored the following books:
Facing Mount Kenya (1938)
My people of Kikuyu and the life of Chief Wangombe (1944)
Suffering Without Bitterness (biography 1968)
Kenya: The land of conflict (1971)
The challenge of Uhuru;: The progress of Kenya, 1968 to 1970 (1971)

Books about Jomo Kenyatta
Guy Arnold (1974), Kenyatta and the politics of Kenya, London: Dent ISBN 0-460-07878-X
Jeremy Murray-Brown (1979), Kenyatta, Allen & Unwin, ISBN 0-04-920059-3
George Delf (1961), Jomo Kenyatta: Towards Truth about "The Light of Kenya" New York: Doubleday. ISBN 0-8371-8307-3
Rawson Macharia (1991), The Truth about the Trial of Jomo Kenyatta, Nairobi: Longman. ISBN 9966-49-823-0
Veena Malhotra (1990), Kenya Under Kenyatta Kalinga. ISBN 81-85163-16-2
Montagu Slater (1955), The trial of Jomo Kenyatta London: Secker and Warburg. ISBN 0-436-47200-7
Elizabeth Watkins, (1993) Jomo's Jailor — Grand Warrior of Kenya Mulberry Books ISBN 978-0-9528952-0-6
Caroline Elkins, (2005) Imperial Reckoning. Henry Holt and Co ISBN 0-8050-7653-

Kenya-Kenya's Premier Jomo Kenyatta (L) and Ethiopia's Emperor Haile Selassie are pictured at Nairobi Airport after the latter's arrival for a visit. Nairobi, Kenya. Circa 6/5/1964. © Bettmann/CORBIS

Films about Jomo
Anthony Howarth & David Koff (1973), Kenyatta Part 3 of The Black Man's Land Trilogy

The Day Jomo Kenyatta ordered colonial names removed

On Friday, October 24 1969, the late President Jomo Kenyatta toured Western Province to familiarise himself with the development in the province. The following day, he was in Nyanza for a similar tour which culminated in the official opening of the Russian sponsored hospital project (Oginga Odinga Referal Hospital, Kisumu).
While in Western Province, the President passed by the administrative district headquarters of Webuye.

In their speeches, local leaders emphasised how the province stood to gain from the tourism industry as the region had an attractive landscape with forests, rivers and animals that would attract foreign tourists, pointing out the Broderick Falls as a major key attraction.

Kenyatta echoed their aspirations and encouraged the promotion of tourists to be put in top gear. He then spoke about the foreign names of such attractions like the Broderick Falls, wondering why some prominent tourist spots continued to bear names of foreigners.

“I want to tell people of Western Province that I felt ashamed trying to pronounce….Bro…bro…bro…derick falls. These are names reflecting servitude…Why can’t you look for better local names with local content, names we know of their origin?” There and then, the President issued a directive that both the leaders and locals look for a substitute name for the tourist feature.

He caused laughter when he asked: “Which Luhya man was called Broderick? Broderick was whose relative?  A name is very important for identity. Which foreigner adopts your African names?   If you want to domineer someone, conquer his intellect first and you will suppress him wholly.”

Following this directive, many roads bearing colonial names were changed. Plaques bearing names of colonial masters were similarly removed and the names changed.

Jomo Kenyatta:
The Kenya Africa Union is Not the Mau Mau, 1952

Speech at the Kenya African Union Meeting at Nyeri, July 26, 1952

... I want you to know the purpose of K.A.U. It is the biggest purpose the African has. It involves every African in Kenya and it is their mouthpiece which asks for freedom. K.A.U. is you and you are the K.A.U. If we unite now, each and every one of us, and each tribe to another, we will cause the implementation in this country of that which the European calls democracy. True democracy has no colour distinction. It does not choose between black and white.

We are here in this tremendous gathering under the K.A.U. flag to find which road leads us from darkness into democracy. In order to find it we Africans must first achieve the right to elect our own representatives. That is surely the first principle of democracy. We are the only race in Kenya which does not elect its own representatives in the Legislature and we are going to set about to rectify this situation. We feel we are dominated by a handful of others who refuse to be just. God said this is our land. Land in which we are to flourish as a people. We are not worried that other races are here with us in our country, but we insist that we are the leaders here, and what we want we insist we get.

We want our cattle to get fat on our land so that our children grow up in prosperity; we do not want that fat removed to feed others. He who has ears should now hear that K.A.U. claims this land as its own gift from God and I wish those who arc black, white or brown at this meeting to know this. K.A.U. speaks in daylight. He who calls us the Mau Mau is not truthful. We do not know this thing Mau Mau. We want to prosper as a nation, and as a nation we demand equality, that is equal pay for equal work. Whether it is a chief, headman or labourer be needs in these days increased salary. He needs a salary that compares with a salary of a European who does equal work. We will never get our freedom unless we succeed in this issue. We do not want equal pay for equal work tomorrow-we want it right now. Those who profess to be just must realize that this is the foundation of justice. It has never been known in history that a country prospers without equality. We despise bribery and corruption, those two words that the European repeatedly refers to. Bribery and corruption is prevalent in this country, but I am not surprised. As long as a people are held down, corruption is sure to rise and the only answer to this is a policy of equality. If we work together as one, we must succeed.

Our country today is in a bad state for its land is full of fools-and fools in a country delay the independence of its people. K.A.U. seeks to remedy this situation and I tell you now it despises thieving, robbery and murder for these practices ruin our country. I say this because if one man steals, or two men steal, there are people sitting close by lapping up information, who say the whole tribe is bad because a theft has been committed. Those people are wrecking our chances of advancement. They will prevent us getting freedom. If I have my own way, let me tell you I would butcher the criminal, and there are more criminals than one in more senses than one. The policeman must arrest an offender, a man who is purely an offender, but lie must not go about picking up people with a small horn of liquor in their hands and march them in procession with his fellow policemen to Government and say he has got a Mau Mau amongst the Kikuyu people. The plain clothes man who hides in the hedges must, I demand, get the truth of our words before be flies to Government to present them with false information. I ask this of them who arc in the meeting to take heed of my words and do their work properly and justly. . . .
Kenyatta and Mboya

. . . Do not be scared of the few policemen under those trees who are holding their rifles high in the air for you to see. Their job is to seize criminals, and we shall save them a duty today. I will never ask you to be subversive but I ask you to be united, for the day of Independence is the day of complete unity and if we unite completely tomorrow, our independence will come tomorrow. This is the day for you to work bard for your country, it is not words but deeds that count and the deeds I ask for come from your pockets. The biggest subscribers to K.A.U. are in this order. First, Thomson's Falls branch, second, Elburgon branch and third Gatundu branch. Do you, in Nyeri branch, want to beat them? Then let us see your deeds come forth.
I want to touch on a number of points, and I ask you for the hundredth time to keep quiet whilst I do this. We want self-government, but this we will never get if we drink beer. It is harming our country and making people fools and encouraging crime. It is also taking all our money. Prosperity is a prerequisite of independence and, more important, the beer we are drinking is harmful to our birthrate. You sleep with a woman for nothing if you drink beer. It causes your bones to weaken and if you want to increase the population of the Kikuyu you must stop drinking.
Statue of Mzee Jomo Kenyatta

. . . K.A.U. is not a fighting union that uses fists and weapons. If any of you here think that force is good, I do not agree with you: remember the old saying that he who is hit with a rungu returns, but he who is bit with justice never comes back. I do not want people to accuse us falsely-that we steal and that we are Mau Mau. I pray to you that we join hands for freedom and freedom means abolishing criminality. Beer harms us and those who drink it do us harm and they may be the so-called Mau Mau. Whatever grievances we have, let us air them here in the open. The criminal does not ,want freedom and land-he wants to line his own pocket. Let us therefore demand our rights justly. The British Government has discussed the land problem in Kenya and we hope to have a Royal Commission to this country to look into the land problem very shortly. When this Royal Commission comes, let us show it that we are a good peaceful people and not thieves and robbers.
Source: From F. D. Cornfield, The Origins and Growth of Mau Mau, Sessional Paper No. 5 of 1959-1960 (Nairobi: 1960), pp. 301-308.

Dr. Kenneth Kaunda of North Rhodesia, Julius Nyerere of Tanzania, Jomo Kenyatta of Kenya, and Dr. Milton Obote of Uganda at the East African Heads of Government Conference, 1964

Mzee Jomo Kenyatta Was A Kalenjin

By Walden Oriop Kirui
After years of research I am now able to display Jomo Kenyatta’s early portrays, his real father and why he dropped [his] Kikuyu names (Kamau). Mzee Jomo Kenyatta is believed to have been a Kipsigis who grew up among the Kikuyu.

The legend is like this. After the demise of the great Nandi Oloibon Kipnyolei arap Turugat (Simbolei) his sons went to other parts of the Kalenjinland. One of them, Chebochok arap Boiso was to stay in Londiani in Kericho District. While in Londiani arap Bosio met a young lady later to become the mother of Mzee Jomo Kenyatta. It is believed that their friendship resulted in the birth of Kenyatta whom we are told was originally called Johnstone Peter Kamau. Kamau’s mother Wamboi is reported to have been a widow who used to herd cattle in Londiani. She later sought employment in European farms in Central Province. While in Kikuyu land, Wamboi got married to Muigai who is wrongly believed to have been Kenyatta’s father.

After sometimes, Muigai divorced Wamboi “for having a child from Lumbwa (kipsigis) people. She went back to work in European farms. In 1913, all brothers of Koitalel arap Samoei were rounded up and banished to Central Province for opposing the evil plans of the white man. They were Kipchomber arap Koilegen (Kochich-lem), arap Boiso and Kibuigut. They were detained in Nyeri and Forth Hall now Maragwa. While in Kikuyuland, Kenyatta’s mother was assigned the role of taking care of the three detainees. Why the white man did chose Kenayyat’s mother. Is it possible that Wamboi was able to speak Kalenjin, or did the detainees choose her for reason detailed above?

When arap Koilegen was about to die in July 1916, he summoned Kenyatta to his house for briefing. Kenyatta was then a student at Thogoto Mission School. He gave him a beaded belt known in Kalenjin as Kenyattet, a container for holding stuff (tobacco), a flywhisk and a monkey skin called Siombuut. He then told Kenyatta that when the white men go back to Britain he would lead the nation. He instructed him to drop Kikuyu names, Peter Kamau which he did. After that he instructed him to go to Loita and seek further advice from Maasai Laibons and in particular Ole Mokompo who died in the early 70s.

After being blessed by the Oloibon, he was told, “Shomo Kenyatta!” i.e. go with this belt.Through divive power, Kenyatta thought his name was Jomo Kenyatta. Jomo is devived from Maasai verb Shomo arap Bosio, Kenyatta’s father died in 1929 after being tortured by the white man. When he died, Kenyatta was schooling in London. His demise shocked Kenyatta so much that for three days, Kenyatta was indoors crying and mourning the death of arap Bosio. Why then mourn arap Boisio!?
Back to Nyeri, arap Boisio again befriended a young Kikuyu lady named Margaret Muthoni who was President Kibaki’s father’s sister. They married and had children who now live in Kericho District. Before arap Koilgen died, another old man form Tugen named Chepkeres arap Toroitich visited him, he later blessed him and told him that one of his grandsons would one day rule Kenya.This later came to be true when Daniel Kapkorios arap Moi became president. Sadly throughout the time he was in power, Moi never assisted the descendants of arap Koilgen,the Talai clan.They are squatting in Kericho Township since their land was taken by the white man. Moi later gave power to Uhuru Kenyata and Kibaki will do the same.

An Epitome of Indigenous Pan-Africanism: Jomo Kenyatta, Nationalism and Intellectual Production in Kenya 
Department of Development Support.
P.O. BOX 339,
South Africa.
This Paper seeks to discuss the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, the founding president and head of state to the republic of Kenya. The paper focuses on Kenyatta as one of the pioneer and giant African Pan-Africanist, Nationalist and an intellectual. The period in focus will be between the years 1952 – 1978 when he died. As a pan- Afrianist, the late Kenyatta together with other founding presidents Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Julius Nyerere of Tanzania, Patrice Lumumba of the republic of Congo, Leopold Sengo of Senegal among others joined hands to spread the message and values of pan-Afrianism which emphasized intellectualism, political and economic co-operation that would lead to political unity of Africa. The pan-Africanism spirit, demanded that riches of Africa be used for the benefit, upliftment, development and enjoyment of African people. The founding presidents saw Pan- Africanism as a system of equitably sharing food, clothing, homes, education and happiness among Africans. It is the outstanding African scholars, political scientists, historians and philosophers living in Africa and the Diaspora who developed pan-Africanism that was conceived in the womb of Africa and a product made in Africa by Africans. This paper will therefore focus on Kenyatta`s role in fostering pan- African ideologies for the continent of Africa. Having been influenced by Nationalism, Kenyatta sought to address the inter-related issues of power, identity politics, self-assertion and autonomy for Kenya, himself and African continent. His activities in his struggle for independence and democratic governance in Kenya evidence this. His role in initiating the spirit of Harambee (development through fund raisings) among the diverse ethnic groups of Kenya is particularly well recognized, appreciated and approved by Kenyans. The spirit of Harambee has in particular seen Kenyans fundraise for schools; churches and many development projects which, inturn have seen Kenya take strides in various spheres of development. This paper will also seek to give a critical examination of the challenges faced and caused by Kenyatta as a statesman in his leadership styles especially the way he dealt with emerging opposition in his cabinet. Finally, the paper seeks to discuss Kenyatta as an intellectual. As a trained anthropologist and an Author, Kenyatta contributed immensely in knowledge production in Kenya and Africa as a continent. He published books such as facing Mount Kenya that talks about his tribe the Gikuyu, and their traditional life.

                      Jomo and achieng oneko

I must for sure admit that, conferences and seminars are good opportunities to take stock of where the African peoples are coming from, and where they are going. I am pleased to be associated with this CODESRIA 30th celebrations meeting to reflect on the question of leadership and the vision of Pan-Africanism in Africa, forty years after the achievement of political independence. There are many who celebrate Africa on the move while there are those who are paralysed with pessimism and remain simply pontificating on the future. The year 2003 has been momentous in many ways and NEPAD debate and African renaissance offers genuine political opportunities for African unity and cooperation. Incidentally, Kenya has been at the forefront of supporting the idea of African unity and the search for new forms of economic relations. Jomo Kenyatta as one of the leaders of Kenya, distinguished himself in his vision and resolute action for the liberation of the continent.
First, this paper seeks to examine Kenyatta’s background within the African context. It is not my intention to detail, in here a biography of this great African statesman, for this will be a labour of santimonious indulgence, indeed an exercise of futility since many African and africanist scholars have done so more extensively. However, allow me to briefly state that Kenyatta was born at Ng'enda in the Gatundu Division of Kiambu in the year 1889. His parents were Muigai and Wambui. He was later baptized a Christian with the name of John Peter, which he changed to Johnstone. He changed his name to Jomo in 1938. He lived among Maasai relatives in Narok during World War I. While staying in Narok kenyatta worked as a clerk to an Asian trader. After the war, he served as a storekeeper to a European firm. During this time, he began wearing his beaded belt Kenyatta. (Ochieng, and Ogot, 1996).
He married Grace Wahu in 1920, the mother of Peter Muigai and Margaret Wambui. He worked in the Nairobi City Council water department between 1921-26 on a salary of about Shillings 250.00 per month. Though he owned a shamba and a house at Dagoretti, he preferred to live closer to town at Kilimani in a hut and cycled home during weekends. By 1925, he was one of the leaders of the Kikuyu Central Association (KCA), which chose him to represent the Kikuyu land problems before the Hilton Young Commission in Nairobi. Thus starting his career in politics. In 1928, he published his newspaper, Muigwithania that dealt with Kikuyu culture and new farming methods. The KCA sent him to England in 1929 to influence British opinion on tribal land. After touring some parts of Europe, including Russia in 1930, he returned to Kenya to fight the case on female circumcision with the Scottish Mission and strongly supported independent schools. In 1931, Kenyatta again went to England to present a written petition to parliament where he met Mahatma Gandhi of India in November 1932. After giving evidence before the Morris Carter Commission, he proceeded to Moscow to learn Economics but distributed to settlers something that made Kenyatta angry and spoke about Britain's injustice. For this reason he was dubbed a communist by the British. He taught Gikuyu at the University College, London and also wrote a book on the Kikuyu language in 1937. Under Professor Malinowski, he studied Anthropology at the famous London School of Economics (LSE). In 1938, his book, "Facing Mount Kenya" saw the light of day. It was about Kikuyu customs.was forced to return to Britain by 1933. During the gold rush, land in Kakamega reserve was being

During the World War II, Kenyatta served on a farm in the United Kingdom, while owning his own farm there. He married Edna Clarke, mother of his son, Peter Magana in 1942. Along with other African leaders, including Nkrumah of Ghana, he took part in the Fifth Pan-African Congress of 1945 in Manchester. When he returned to Kenya in 1946, he married Wanjiku, Senior Chief Koinange's daughter, who gave birth to his daughter Jane Wambui. During his travels in the countryside at Kiambu, Murang'a and Nyeri, he took the opportunity to contact the local people and to speak to them. His last wife was Mama Ngina, the mother of Christine, Uhuru, Anna Nyokabi and Muhoho. In 1947, he took over the leadership of Kenya African Union (KAU) from James Gichuru. (Ochieng, and Ogot, 1996).
On October 20, 1952, Sir Evelyn, Baring, newly appointed Governor of Kenya of two weeks, declared a state of emergency in the country. Jomo Kenyatta and other prominent leaders were arrested. His trial at Kapenguria on April 8, 1953, for managing Mau Mau was a mockery of justice (Muoria, 1994). He was sentenced to 7 years in imprison with hard labor and to indefinite restrictions thereafter. On April 14, 1959, Jomo Kenyatta completed his sentence at Lokitaung but remained in restriction at Lodwar. He was Later, moved to Maralal, where he remained until August 1961. On August 14, 1961, he was allowed to return to his Gatundu home. On August 21, 1961, nine years after his arrest, he was freed from all restrictions. (Muoria, 1994).
On October 28, 1961, Kenyatta became the President of the Kenya African National Union and a month later, he headed a KANU delegation to London for talks to prepare the way for the Lancaster House Conference. On June 1, 1963, Mzee Kenyatta became the first Prime Minister of self-governing Kenya. At midnight on December 12, 1963, at Uhuru Stadium, amid world leaders and multitudes of people, the Kenya flag was unfurled. A new nation was born. A year later on December 12, 1964, Kenya became a Republic within the Commonwealth, with Kenyatta, as the President. Mzee Kenyatta is acclaimed from all quarters of the world as a true son of Africa, a renowned leader of vision, initiative, guidance and an international public figure of the highest caliber. Kenya under the "Baba Wa Taifa" (Father of the Nation) had enjoyed political stability, economic progress as well as agricultural, industrial and educational advances.(Muoria,1994). Kenyatta died on 22nd August 1978 at 3.30 A.M. in Mombasa at the age of 89 years, while there on a busy working holiday for the last time. President Kenyatta is acknowledged as one of the greatest men of the twenthieth century. (Ochieng, and Ogot, 1996). His rule will go down in history as a golden era in Kenya's positive development. Indeed, he was a beacon, a rallying point for suffering Kenyans to fight for their rights, justice and freedom. His brilliance gave strength and aspiration to people beyond the boundaries of Kenya, indeed beyond the shores of Africa. Just as one light shines in total darkness and provides a rallying point, so did Kenyatta become the focus of the freedom fight for Kenya over half a century to dispel the darkness and injustice of colonialism. Before matter can become light, it has to suffer the rigors of heat. So did Kenyatta suffer the rigorous of imprisonment to bring independence to Kenya. As the founding father of Kenya, and its undisputed leader, he came to be known as Mzee, Swahili word for a respected elder.

President Kenyatta is greeted on arrival in Mombasa on August 24, 1972 by the Coast Provincial Commissioner, Mr. Eliud Mahihu. Mzee was given a tumultuous welcome by thousands of Mombasa residents of all races at the start of his working holiday at the Coast.

There is Kenyatta the leader who united all races and tribes for the freedom struggle; Kenyatta the orator who held his listeners entranced, Kenyatta the journalist who launched the first indigenous paper to voice his people's demands; Kenyatta the scholar who wrote the first serious study about his people; Kenyatta the teacher who initiated love for Kenya culture and heritage; Kenyatta the farmer who loved his land and urged his people to return to it; Kenyatta the biographer who documented his 'suffering without bitterness'; Kenyatta the conservationist who protected Kenya's priceless fauna and flora; Kenyatta the father figure who showered love and affection on all; Kenyatta the democrat who upheld the democratic principle of one-man one-vote; Kenyatta the elder statesman who counseled other Heads of State, and finally Kenyatta the visionary who had a glorious image of Kenya's future and toiled to realize it. Since ideas are more enduring than human bodies and sacrifices last longer than sermons thus the light that is Kenyatta burns on to illuminate the path of Kenya. This is one quality that makes him difficult to understand, according to Lonsdale:
"Kenyatta is conventionally seen as a consummate political fixer, a ‘prince’ rather than an ideological ‘prophet’ like his neighbour Nyerere of Tanzania. I wish to propose a more ideological Kenyatta. I do so by paying more attention to intellectual biography, and indeed to African theology and political thought, than is normal in African historiography".(Lonsdale, 2000).

Pan Africanism , Kenya and Kenyatta
The first pan-Kenyan nationalist movement was led by Harry Thuku to protest against white-settler dominance. His party, the East African Association, traced its roots to the early Kikuyu political groups. Thuku was arrested by the colonial authorities in 1922 and was exiled for seven years. He was released only after agreeing to cooperate with the colonials, a decision that would undermine his leadership of the Kikuyus. This incident united Kenya's diverse African communities firmly together in their demands for freedom from British colonial rule. (Wepman, 1985:3)
Jomo Kenyatta would become the next great Kenyan leader following Thuku. He quickly became the first propaganda secretary of the East African Association, and later the secretary-general of the Kikuyu Central Association. In 1929, Kenyatta sailed to England to present the Association's case for freedom directly to the Colonial office, the British parliament and the British people. The Carter Land Commission was convened in 1931 to adjudicate land interests and Kenyatta once again presented evidence supporting the Association's cause. The findings of the Commission proved detrimental for the Africans however, for it marked out permanent barriers between the white-owned farms and the African Land Units or "reserves." These boundries were made into law five years later. As a result, the number of groups demanding greater African political power increased dramatically. The colonial government quickly reacted by banning all African political associations in 1940.
World War II only increased African discontent as many Africans fought side by side with their colonial overlords. Much like their American counterparts, during the five year conflict, Africans were exposed to many new influences and developed an awareness that the white man was far from invincible. Empowered by this new outlook, African veterans returned home to their respective countries only to face discrimination. Many rebelled against such unfair treatment. As discontent grew, the anti-colonial fervor swept across Africa (Throup and Hornsby, 1998).
As the fight for freedom grew, the Kikuyu formed secret societies united in desire to break British rule. These societies encouraged oath taking ceremonies which bound the participants to wage war against Europeans and any Africans who were thought to be collaborators. From this movement, the Kikuyu dominated Mau Mau organization that had been formed. On October 20, 1952 the Mau Mau protested the midnight arrest of Jomo Kenyatta and five colleagues. 97 Africans considered to be collaborators were killed in what is today known as the "Lari Massacre." Some Mau Mau however denied involvement in the affair, calling it a government plot. The British accused Kenyatta of organizing the Mau Mau and subjected him to a rigged trial. The accused were all found guilty and sentenced to seven years of hard labor at a remote camp near Lake Turkana.
The Mau Mau rebellion continued until 1956. During the three years of civil war, over 30,000 African men, women, and children were imprisoned in British concentration camps, many losing their homes and their land as a result. Though only 100 Europeans were killed, the British massacred over 13,000 Africans during the course of the war.
But the war was costly to the British, a scenario that made the colonial government to finally concede some political power to the Africans with limited representation in the Legislative Council. Angry white settlers, not satisfied with anything short of complete partition of the country, began to leave. Kenyatta was sentenced to two more years of prison, but was elected president "in absentia" of the Kenya African National Union, or KANU. (Muoria, 1994).
While KANU advocated a strong central government, the newly formed Kenya African Democratic Union, or KADU, favored a decentralized federal form of government. Leaders of both parties (KANU and KADU) attended talks at Lancaster House in England due to his continuing imprisonment. General elections were held for the first time in February 1961. KANU received more votes, but refused to participate in government until Kenyatta was released. The Asian Kenya Freedom Party and numerous independent candidates joined in the protest and, as political pressure built up, Kenyatta was finally released in August 1961.
KANU and KADU continued to debate the eventual form of government most suited to a free Kenya. In the meantime, Kenyatta agreed to a coalition government until independence. The first universal elections in the country took place in May 1963, with an overwhelming victory for Kenyatta and the KANU party. On June 1, 1963, Jomo Kenyatta became the first Prime Minister of Kenya. In his inaugural address, he promoted a concept that would eventually become an official motto now incorporated in the county's coat of arms: Harambee, or let us work together, in building a free nation. Independence became a reality for Kenya on December 12, 1963. (Kwazulu Natal website).

Kenyatta and His Vision for African Leadership
Forty years after Kenya independence, the difference between liberation and social emancipation is becoming more apparent. Collective leadership and collective responsibility has by and large been missing from the top decision making processes in Africa in the past forty years. Instead, patriarchal forms of governance along with vanguardism were the political forms through which programmes of action were dictated to the producers. At an early moment in the independence of Kenya, there was a recognition of the centrality of these elements in the political process and the term wananchi (Citizens) became part of the popular vocabulary. (Wepman, 1985:3). Now, ideas of the individual, private accumulation, and the market have replaced the commitment toward emancipating Africa and her peoples from the destruction caused by four hundred years of contact with Europe.
The thrust of this paper will be to accentuate and celebrate the Kenyatta leadership and his intellectual production for Africa. The more perceptive among the committed intellectuals have sought to understand why concepts such as imperialism, colonialism and neo-colonialism have taken a back seat to globalization as a way to organize thoughts and to organize political possibilities. There is the proposition that the conception globalization is being used as a powerful deterrent to anti-imperialist action, and consequently, the use of concepts such as globalization contains no vision for the African people since it is being used to signal powerlessness on the part of the producers in Africa and the Third World (Harvey 1995).
Kenyatta himself, According to Lonsdale (2000), saw the Modern World as a threat to moral and social order. At its worst, it caused the ‘detribalisation’ that deprived people of the will, and sense of purpose, that were needed to struggle for self-determination. He worked out this view in the course of his own intellectual and moral journey. In the early years of his public life, in the 1920s, he had enthusiastically linked Christianity to the cultural reform of his people. By the 1930s, he had arrived at a more conservative God, partly because of what his fellow Christians seemed to be abandoning in Kikuyu culture, partly because of his Malinowskian anthropology, learned in London.. This conservative political theology came to dominate his political judgment. (Lonsdale, 1999:31-65.)
There were three profound implications for Kenyatta’s (and Kenya’s) political practice, both in his leadership of anti-colonial nationalism, and as his country’s first President:
a. Kenya’s critical nationalities, the moral crucibles for self-mastery, were the ethnicities that (in general) had acquired their own vernacular Bibles, Kenya’s only common political primer. 
b. Each nationality owed it to its own sense of self-mastery to fight its own political battles. A pan-ethnic nationalism carried the risk of denying to others the responsibility that they owed to themselves. And there were clear limits to a cultural project to destroy ethnicity as a moral community.
If authority lay in virtuous labour that sustained one’s own prosperity, rather than that of another (an employer), then a class politics in which the poor had the right of struggle was scarcely thinkable. (Lonsdale, 1999:31-65).
The two points, on African unity and confidence in the youth will distinguish the African continent in the 21st century and the question for this conference and for serious thinkers in Africa will be how to develop the intellectual and political leadership to chart an economic and social course which breaks the forms of economic relations which have characterised the continent since the period of colonialism. (Lonsdale, 1999:31-65). Forty years of formal sovereignty have made it more possible to grasp the strength and weaknesses of an independence which meant the Africanization of the structures of the colonial state. At the end of the twentieth century, one can also critique the cultural and gender bias which was in-built in concepts of African unity.
The transcendence of colonialism and racial degradation as goals of the African nationalist leadership inspired the ideals of continental unity but African feminists have exposed how the same nationalists have sanctioned the institutionalisation of gender differences. Nationalists were always ambivalent on issues of African languages, cultures, and religion and have been as culpable as colonial overlords in ensuring that men and women, especially women who are producers, did not have the same rights and access to resources. In this sense, the goals of unity and liberation in this century have been a much masculinised concept and one sees this reproduced in the present period with the amount of ink flowing on the new leadership in Africa. (Wepman, 1985:3).
The issue of the content of African leadership has been the subject of numerous books, commentaries and meetings. Once the mass resistance to oppression exploded in the face of the colonisers, there was an outpouring of projects to develop the correct 'Political Leadership in Africa'. (Mazrui, 1972.10). The obscene military dictatorhips once experienced in Nigeria and other parts of Africa forced a retreat by those who celebrated the military as bearers of modernity in an earlier period. The democratic discussions which take place at conferences and meetings require some historical context to grasp who and what are the forces capable of maintaining democratic relations in Africa. We are reminded by Eusi Kwayana that once the popular rebellions began in the period of the second global war, the colonial offices of France and Britain wanted to find good leaders. The stress on individual leaders meant that the colonial office was always looking for the kind of leader with whom they could negotiate. Kwayana remarked that, "The Colonial office in London also fostered the conception of leaderism by maintaining that without the leaders to stir up the people, they could contain the colonial uprisings". (Berman, 1990). 
Let me now briefly examine the questions of leadership and the intellectual traditions which have shaped African leaders in this century. One cannot speak of leadership without critiquing leaderism and those forms of party organization which inhibit creativity. The organizational culture of centralised party structures has stifled the participation of the producers. Frantz Fanon was far ahead of his time when he spoke at length on the pitfalls of national consciousness. Kenyatta recognized the pitfalls of crude nationalism and he at all times supported a Pan African agenda which rose above petty nationalism. This presentation celebrates those aspects of this Pan African vision which can enrich this vision for the liberation of Africa and the emancipation of humanity.
Kenyatta: Leadership and Intellectual tradition
Like Kenyatta, many political leaders of Africa's nations have displayed various patterns and styles of leadership. These styles according to Mazrui and Michael Tidy, often appear to be revolutionary or at least radical, because they are different from those bequeathed by the politicians of their former colonial powers. Westminster-style democratic leadership, based on open debate and an open electoral process, which was inherited from the colonial masters at the time of decolonization, has disappeared almost everywhere in Africa and given way to different and often less democratic patterns of leadership. Yet these different patterns are not necessarily new in Africa. In some ways they follow the patterns established by Africa's great leaders of the past. Three styles of leadership which form elements of continuity between Africa's pre-colonial past and post-colonial present are: the Elder Tradition, the Sage Tradition, and the Warrior Tradition.
The Elder Tradition
To Mazrui, Elder Tradition is heavily paternalistic, almost by definition. It is particularly strong where you still have the original first president of an African State. The notion of a Founding Father, with prerogatives not just in politics but in opinion formation, is a major component of the total political picture. The elder leader or patriarchal leader is the one who commands neo-filial reverence, a real father figure. He may prefer to withdraw from involvement in the affairs of the nation and dominate the scene from a godlike position in the background rather than as a participating politician, and in general delegate duties to his lesser colleagues who carry out the day-to-day business of running the nation.
Patriarchal leadership can be profoundly African when it becomes intertwined with patriarchal leader - the massive presence of national authority, non-interventionist except when really needed, projecting an air of solidity and stability in spite of the cracks and cleavages of Kenya politics. The affectionate use of the title 'Mzee' for Kenyatta was a manifestation of his patriarchal status and the filial reverence he commanded. The Elder Tradition also carries heavy preference for consensus in the family. The father figure expects that consensus and therefore has a profound distrust of dissent and dispute, even of the kind which is indispensable for a vigorous political and intellectual atmosphere. The Elder Tradition also has a preference for reverence and reaffirmation of loyalty towards political leaders, and that reverence and reaffirmation of loyalty is in turn sometimes hostile to the atmosphere of adequate intellectual independence and political criticism. (Throup and Hornsby, 1998).
The Warrior Tradition
Increased attention has recently been paid to the phase of 'primary resistance' when Africa first had to confront Western intrusion. The arguments of scholars like Terence Ranger for Eastern Africa and Michael Crowder for Western Africa identify those early armed challenges by Africans against colonial rule as the very origins of modern nationalism in the continent. By this argument, Tanzania's ruling party and its functions as a liberating force has for its ancestry both the Maji Maji and earlier rebellions against German rule. African struggles against colonial rule did not begin with modern political parties and western-trained intellectuals, but originated in those early 'primary resisters' with their spears poised against Western military technology.
Yet, while some scholars regard the Nkurumahs and Nyereres of modern Africa as the true heirs of these primary resisters, it is certain military regimes in independent Africa, and the liberation fighters in Southern Africa, who really carry the mantle of the original primary resisters. The Warrior Tradition was not a technique invented to counter colonialism. Present-day military rulers and freedom fighters are a symbol of the beginning of a new Warrior Tradition, or perhaps a resurrection of the old one. The struggle against dependency as exemplified by certain military regimes is a reactivation of the ancestral assertiveness of warrior culture. (Mazrui, 1972.10)
Yet Warrior Tradition revived before the colonial period was over. The Mau Mau movement helped many Kikuyu Christians transcend the conditioning of 'turning the other cheek, as well as overcome the terror of eternal Christian damnation. The oaths which ensured militant commitment helped to counter the emasculating consequences of the colonial experience. The forest fighters were militarily defeated by the British, but this was clearly a victory that vanquished. The political triumph went to Africans, even if the military success was retained by the colonists. The stranglehold of the white settlers was at last broken, and before long Kenya was preparing for independence.
Mau Mau was the first great liberation movement of the modern period. All the efforts which are now being made in Southern Africa to consolidate resistance, organize sabotage, and seek to dispel which power and privilege, have for the their heroic ancestry that band of fighters in the Nyandarua forests. The Warrior Tradition was at least temporarily revived at a critical moment in Kenya's history. (Mazrui, 1972.10)
In addition to these types and styles of leadership, there have been a number of pre-colonial cultural traditions which affected those types and styles. The most obvious was the elder tradition in pre-colonial African culture, which has probably conditioned the patriarchal style after independence. The reverence of Jomo Kenyatta as Mzee (the Elder) in Kenya was substantially the outcome of the precolonial elder tradition still alive and well. Nelson Mandela by the time of his release was also a heroic Mzee (Elder). Was Ronald Reagan held in affection by the American people partly because he was perceived as an elder?
There will continue to be an ideological and intellectual crisis in the African world until Africans understand Pan-Africanism, its value and luminaries visions like those of Kenyatta, and apply them to their many problems. These include 'foreign debts', reparations, repatriation of African intellectual property from the museums of Europe, lack of continental railroads and air routes, intra-trade, communication and technological development among the African people and states. The triumph of Pan-Africanism, the only way Africans can survive the foreign onslaught and live as a truly liberated people, will come out of the sweat and blood of the African people themselves. As Nkrumah put it:
'Only a united Africa can redeem its past glory, renew and reinforce its strength for the realisation of its destiny. 'We are today the richest and yet the poorest of continents, but in unity our continent could smile in a new era of prosperity and power.'

A study in neo-colonialism: Jomo Kenyatta with Macdonald in 1963

Ali Mazrui promotes the view that Africa needs a process of `social engineering' to instigate nation-building, with the four imperatives: "emphasising what is African, Nationalising what is tribal, idealising what is indigenous, and indigenising what is foreign." In other words, he is calling for an approach that allows room for being specifically African and not merely dependent on western models. It illustrates the danger of ideological and political imitation that has no roots in African soil and is therefore too alien to achieve authenticity (Berman, 1990).
Modernisation in Africa need not be synonymous with the import of westernisation or the attempt to erase ethnic consciousness. This has already been tried and has proved largely intellectual, and sometimes tragic. The incorporation of ethnicity into political legislation seems to be crucial if the threat of ethnic warfare, as has been recently witnessed in Rwanda, is going to be removed. The option of federalism seems to have been left relatively untouched, despite the fact that it has the mechanisms and potential within it to incorporate ethnic diversities in such a way that does not threaten the national profile. With resources becoming scarcer every day, the intensity of ethnic feeling is only going to increase, and ignoring ethnic profiles within African states could become increasingly dangerous.
Politics in Africa continue to be characterized by two opposing trends. In some places, democracy is gaining ground, strengthening the argument that there is an African Renaissance“ creeping slowly across the continent. For example, in countries such as Botswana, Mali, and South Africa, citizens enjoy more political competition, freer media, and greater civil liberties than at any time in their independent history. However, in many other parts of Africa, the process of democratization has been reversed, particularly in places like Zimbabwe and Cote d‘Ivoire. Throughout the continent, the —African Renaissance“ continues to be threatened by poverty, power struggles, ethnic conflict, poor governance, and corruption. With the call of the African partriachy and living their examples, I have argued that the African renaissance can be achieved with ease.
According to Motsoko Pheko, Pan-Africanism demands that the riches of Africa be used for the benefit, upliftment, development and enjoyment of the African people. Pan-Africanism is a system of equitably sharing food, clothing,homes,education, healthcare, wealth, land, work, security of life and happiness. Pan-Africanism is the privilege of the African people to love themselves and to give themselves and their way of life respect and preference. Pan-Africanism was developed by outstanding African scholars, political scientists, historians and philosophers living in Africa and the diaspora. It was conceived in the womb of Africa. It is a product made in Africa by Africans.
challenged Pan-Africanism intellectually. That is why, in the midst of confusion caused by the so-called 'African renaissance', Colonel Muammar Gaddafi echoed the pan-African call for a United States of Africa when he opened the fifth summit of the Organisation of African Unity in Libya.
The man to emulate in the vision of African renaissance therefore, is Kenyatta-who was clearly a man of numerous talents. Not only was he a very charming individual, but was very articulate too. This fact made him a very formidable politician, because he always commanded the attention of his audiences. He was also a journalist, a scholar, a teacher, a biographer, a conservationist, but most importantly, the father figure Kenya desperately needed. (Lonsdale, 1999:31-65.) As a journalist, he launched the first indeginous newspaper to voice Kenyan demands to the colonial government, and also to sensitize the public on their rights. As a scholar, he wrote the first serious study about his people, and as a biographer, documented the book suffering without bitterness. What Mzee Kenyatta accomplished was monumental, but what makes it even more mind-boggling is the time period in which he did it. His success despite such heavy odds is why he will forever be immortalized in African and World history books alongside other black nationalists. (Throup and Hornsby, 1998)

Mzee Jomo Kenyatta with Emperor Haile Selassie aka Ras Tafari with Idi Amin of Uganda in the background

DEC1968 - The Case Of Rawson Macharia - On October 21 1952 the colonial authorities arrested six leaders they believed were responsible for directing the operations of the Mau Mau Movement, Jomo Kenyatta was one of them. After three weeks in detention they were transported to Kapenguria to stand trial for managing Mau Mau. The judge in that famous summing up of the trial at Kapenguria said: "Although my finding of the facts means that I disbelieve ten witnesses for the defence and I believe one witness for the prosecution, I have no hesitation on doing so. Rawson Macharia gave his evidence so well." In 1958, six years later, the truth was out. Rawson Macharia's evidence was placed in doubt. (This picture) Kenyatta was called to give evidence at Macharia's trial in January 1959. It was the first time he had been seen in public since his trial at Kapenguria. He looked gaunt and weak and walked with a stoop. Kenyatta was finally released.