Death of Daniel arap Moi, the teacher who became president of Kenya

He is a figure from East Africa who has just passed away, and with him, a whole section of the history of independence. Former Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi passed away on Tuesday February 4, 2020 at the age of 95. A life intimately mixed with the pre and post-independence years of this African juggernaut.

Faced with British colonization

Born on September 2, 1924, in a modest family in the Rift Valley, he experienced the time of British colonization, the law of the strongest over the weakest, the domination of a white minority which granted itself the best lands. and forces the colonized to work for it, and beware of those who resist it as in 1921: the native workers who protested against the reduction of a third of their wages are slaughtered coldly or deported.

The entire history of the United Kingdom in Kenya is punctuated by repressed uprisings in the blood. In this atmosphere of submission and returned anger, Moi received a Christian education and became a teacher, from 1946 to 1955.

In the terrible convulsion of the Mau Mau revolt (maybe 300,000 dead), he entered politics, approaching Jomo Kenyatta, the leader of the Kenyan independence movement. While again crushing the protesters, the British are preparing Kenya’s march to independence by loosening its political grip and making more room for administration to the Kenyans. Daniel arap Moi becomes the representative of the Rift Valley province, and takes part in the negotiations on independence alongside Jomo Kenyatta.

Once Kenya became independent in 1963, Kenyatta took over the reigns of power, and relied on Me in the new administration. He became its vice-president in 1967 until his death in 1978. The dolphin succeeds the father of independence.

The authoritarian years

It intensifies the authoritarian character of its predecessor, rejects the multiparty system, fights human rights defenders, arrests opponents, instrumentalizes ethnic rivalries. There are countless abusive imprisonments, like that of the future Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai, but also embezzlement and corruption cases.

When he left office in 2002, his record was meager. To his credit, however, the relative stability of his country in the light of the tragedies experienced by its neighbors in the sub-region, starting with Rwanda, Burundi, Somalia, Ethiopia.

After leaving power, he tries to change his image of autocrat in favor of the sage. He asks ” sorry “ for the faults committed under his regime, he was consulted to bring order to his country, during the post-electoral riots in late 2007 and early 2008. Several times accused of corruption, he was never really worried .

It is with these words that the current Kenyan president, Uhuru Kenyatta, on the road to the United States, announced the death of Moi: ” Our nation and continent have been immensely blessed by the dedication and service of the late Mzee Moi, who spent most of his adult life serving Kenya and Africa.


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