Kenyatta Day

Kenyatta Day

October 20
The Republic of Kenya is on the eastern coast of Africa. It is surrounded by Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania. British settlers arrived in East Africa in the mid-1800s and eventually promoted European settlement in some of the most fertile parts of Kenya, forcing the native Kenyans from their land.
Kenya was officially made a British colony in 1920. European settlers were allowed to participate in government, while Africans were not allowed to directly participate in the political arena.
Between 1952 and 1959, Kenyans rebelled against British colonial rule and its land policies. One of the people involved in those rebellions was Jomo Kenyatta, who became the nation's first president. Following the rebellions, Africans were given many more opportunities to participate in politics. The first elections to elect Africans to the Legislative Council took place in 1957. On June 1, 1963, Kenya became a self-ruling country, and then it became an independent country on December 12 of that same year. Kenya's first president was Jomo Kenyatta, an ethnic Kikuyu and head of the Kenya African National Union (KANU).
During his time as president, Kenyatta saw Kenya join the United Nations, promoted education and private enterprise, helped modernize the nation through government-financed technical training and new job opportunities, created trade agreements with neighboring states, and passionately opposed Communism at a time when many newly emerging post-colonial African nations were accepting financing from Russia, China, and Cuba for "freedom struggles." Under Kenyatta's leadership, Kenya grew to be a stable nation, even though there was chaos and civil war in other parts of Africa. This attracted foreign investment in Kenya.
Kenyatta faced criticism, too. He was accused of being too close to Britain, favoring his native Kikuyu tribe, and favoring friends and family when land was granted for development.
Kenyatta died on August 22, 1978, and was succeeded by then Vice President Daniel arap Moi. Kenya celebrates Moi Day every year on October 10 to honor their second president.
In Kenya, October 20 is a national holiday called Kenyatta Day. It was on this day in 1952 that Kenyatta was arrested and sentenced to seven years in prison with hard labor. He was accused of being involved with the Mau Mau movement, a group that fought against British rule. It was later found that Kenyatta had not been involved with the group.
On Kenyatta Day, a ceremony takes place at Nyayo Stadium in Nairobi. The president addresses the nation and inspects the guard of honor. The ceremony includes a military parade, and singers and traditional dancers from around the country provide entertainment for the crowds.
CONTACTS:
Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife Office
Utalii House, Off Uhuru Highway
P.O. Box 30027
Nairobi, Kenya
www.tourism.go.ke

Celebrated in: Kenya

References in periodicals archive ?
On Kenyatta Day, October 20, a public holiday to celebrate the release from detention of Kenya's founding President Jomo Kenyatta, Daniel arap Moi publicly announced that he would retire at the end of his current term.
It is the anniversary of a revolution in Guatemala and Kenyatta Day.