These are the people who laid the foundation for the birth of the Kenyan nation in various ways. We celebrate these heroes every year on Mashujaa Day- the national holiday marked on October 20th.
The Mau Mau fighters had little funding. Out of necessity they made their own weapons, such as this home-made rifle. This and the others like it seen on the wall behind the British officer were produced in Kenya during the Mau Mau 'Emergency'.
The Mau Mau waged a violent campaign of terrorism against both white European settlers and fellow Kenyan's who refused to support them.
Mau Mau Cleansing Oath at Nyeri, 1952
There are many images of the gruesome ceremony during which a witch-doctor slays a sheep, and uses its intestines as a means of convincing natives that they are cleansed, when it is poured on their head.
The Kikuyu tribe was originally founded by a man named Gikuyu. According to Kikuyu history, the Kikuyu God, Ngai, took Gikuyu to the top of Kirinyaga and told him to stay and build his home there.
Harry Thuku (1895–1970)
Harry Thuku was a Kenyan politician who was involved in politics from an early age. He founded the Young Kikuyu Association in 1921. The Association was one of the first political parties to usher in modern African nationalism in Kenya.
Thuku became increasingly conservative as the anti-colonial struggle advanced in Kenya.
He became a wealthy coffee farmer and eventually became the first African member of the Kenyan Coffee Farmers' Union. In 1952 and again in 1954 Thuku denounced the Mau Mau Uprising.
He afterwards removed himself from Kenyan politics.
Oginga Odinga dressed as a Luo Elder.
Luo, also called Kavirondo , are people living among several Bantu-speaking peoples in the flat country near Lake Victoria in western Kenya and northern Tanzania.
More than three million strong, the Luo constitute the third largest ethnic group in Kenya (about one-tenth of the population) after the Kikuyu (with whom they shared political power in the first years after Kenya achieved independence) and the Luhya.
Mr. C.M.G. Argwings-Kodhek (1923-1969)
Argwings-Kodhek was Minister for Foreign Affairs in 1963. He received degrees in law and the social science, and became the first African barrister in Kenya.
According to the journalist William Oloo-Janak: Argwings-Kodhek "like many other educated Luos, used his education to push for independence, providing the intellectual expertise and articulation of issues against the colonial authorities. For instance, Kodhek used his legal expertise to defend Mau Mau suspects in court. Although he was reported to have been killed in a road accident, history has now indicated that the death of C.M.G. Argwings-Kodhek in 1969, once a close confidant of Kenyatta’s, may have been the result of a gun shot fired from a police-issued rifle."
[Source: Migori News]
Mr. J.J.M. Nyagah - Minister for Education, 1963.
In addition to Minister for Education, Nyagah served in several capacities. He was elected to the Legco in a by-election, caused by the creation of a new constituency, following negotiations with the British colonial government to increase African representation.
Honorable Ronald Ngala (1923–1972), President, Kenya African Democratic Union (KANU)
Mr. Ngala was a Kenyan politician and statesman who was a leader of the Kenya African Democratic Union political party from its creation in 1960 until its dissolution in 1964.
KADU was founded in 1960 by several leading politicians who refused to join Jomo Kenyatta's Kenya African National Union (KANU). [Source: Wikipedia]
Mr. Lawrence Sagini - Minister for Local Government in 1966.
Sagini belonged to the Mwabogonko clan, which traces its roots to Nyakundi, a fearless warrior who confronted the British expeditionary forces.
[source: Kenya Yearbook]
Bruce Mackenzie (1919-1978)
Mackenzie was the only White member of Kenya's Cabinet after independence. He served as Minister of Agriculture in President Jomo Kenyatta's administration. He died in 1978 in a plane crash allegedly ordered by Idi Amin for his role in freeing the Israeli hostages in Entebbe.