Jomo Kenyatta: The First President Of The Republic Of Kenya

2433 words - 10 pages

Jomo Kenyatta was the first president of the Republic of Kenya. Born in 1889 in Gatundu Kiambu Kenya, Kenyatta he grew to become one of the African prominent independent leaders. However, his rise into power in the wake of colonization was not a royal road. He was involved in major struggles for independence both in Kenya and other African countries. He managed to acquire education during the times when few Africans were going to school. Kenyatta completed his mission school education in 1912 and became a carpenter. After his initiation which involved physical circumcision as per the Kikuyu culture, he became a renowned person among his people. He was later baptised at the Scotland mission church. His name was changed from John Peter Kamau to Johnson Kamau. Later, he left his home to seek employment in Nairobi. His first job was at Thika where he worked at a sisal farm. At this period, World War I was taking place and British was also involved in war, hence, forced the able bodied men to work in order to avoid them being involved in the war. However, Kenyatta was lucky to escape and went to live with the Masaai in Narok where he got a job as clerk to an Asian contractor. This is the time when he got his name Kenyatta as he took part in the swearing tradition which involved traditional beaded belts which is referred to as “Kenyatta.”
Kenyatta spoke strongly about the injustices that were being committed by the British colonialists both within and outside the country. This made the British to dub him a communist who was out to sabotage British administration in Kenya. Kenyatta was later arrested and released just before the country could attain independence as other leaders demanded for his release from the British authorities . Therefore, this paper explores the life of the first president of the Republic of Kenya, his impact on Kenya and international significance of his life.
Marriage and Family Life
Kenyatta married his first wife Grace Kamau in 1919 according to Kikuyu tradition. His first son Peter Muigai was born in 1920. In order to cater for his family, he used to work as carpenter, later as an interpreter in the Nairobi high court as well as running a store near his home in Nairobi, Dagoretti. He also worked at Nairobi municipal council as the store clerk. Kenyatta joined East African Association (EAA) IN 1922 WHICH marked beginning of his political career. This association had been formed to address the problems that Africans were facing and were urging the British to return the lands they had taken to their owners . No sooner had Kenya became a British crown, the white settlers began to move taking all the land by force leaving Africans landless . Some were confined to certain areas where they were not supposed to leave without official permission.
Political Life
Having joined East African Association (EAA) in 1922, the party would later be disbanded by the British in 1925. However, its former members were not cowed and came together...

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