In July 1962, Tom Mboya set out his vision of the new nation in a speech as powerful and heartfelt as any other in Kenya’s history. Delivered to the bedrock of colonial society, the white settlers in the Kenya National Farmers’ Union, Mboya observed that “to date, our people have been dragged through history”. He promised: “Henceforth, we will write our own history.”
What history have Kenyans written? This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of Kenyan independence from British rule. To mark the occasion Kenya’s Daily Nation – the largest newspaper in East and Central Africa with a circulation of over 200,000 – published a front page article written with my long time co-author Daniel Branch that discusses 50 events that have shaped Kenya since independence.
In many ways the legacy of its colonial past left Kenya a fragile nation. Yet reviewing the 50 events that define Kenya’s history over the past half-century reveals that Kenyans have not simply accepted their fate. Instead, these milestones demonstrate that for all of the country’s fragility and occasional violence, the last 50 years has been marked by resilience, ingenuity, and triumph.
You can read the full article on the Daily Nation website here.