The Story of Madaraka

On 1st June , 1963 , our country attained Madaraka .But what is just Madaraka ?How did we get there ?who did what ?How was it?Well , Madaraka is the day Kenya attained self internal rule from thr British Colonialists .This is the day when the white supremos called it a day in Kenya and we joined the band of independent nations .Our founding father ,Mzee Jomo Kenyatta became the Prime Minister ,responsible for his government .The Queen though was still the head of State , however , the position was ceremonial with no direct links to the running of the nation .Madaraka , is Internal Self Rule .Now how did we get there ?Just how did it all start ?In the late 1800s , European nations were at competition with each other .Each nation wanted to appear supreme before the world order in all spheres of life; socially , economically and politically. In the economic bit , Europe itself had run out of resources after centuries of exploitation (since the period of rebirth) and had to look for an alternative land to acquire resources and that was Africa .Why Africa? Africa was the only land that had not been exploited hence it was the most virgin land of all .Compared to the America that was already been dilapidated , Asia too wasn’t that promising.In the political bit ,European nations were interested in exerting their authority on more people and Africa was the only place they could have done so with limited rebellion.Lastly , the social bit , Europeans considered Africans the most inferior people and were in a mission to civilize them , find them clothes , religion and education .This led to a rush , a scramble , each nations trying to push the other in occupying a territory .This ugly scenes threatened a war in Europe making Chancellor Otto Von Bismarck, the ruler of German to call for a meeting to amicably resolve the issue , christened the Berlin Conference .It is in this conference that British was allocated the present day Kenya .The British of course were the greatest beneficiaries of the deal , getting a huge chunk of African territories , evident to date by the great extent of “anglophonism ” in the continent .The French too were lucky to get a large piece though it was mostly desert land. The Germans , Italians , Spaniards and Portuguese were little unlucky as the escaped with small and unproductive portions.Back to the Kenyan story , the British set up an occupation in their new territory , giving it the name British East Africa .The British rule was not welcome .Rebellions and aggressions grew in various parts of the country .The Coastal parts of the country had the Mijikenda rebellion led by the iron lady Mekatilili Wa Menza , the Rift valley had the Kalenjin rebellion , one of the hardest in Africa , led by Koitalel , the Western parts had the Bukusu , every part of the country resented this new rule but as it was to be , there was little success as the entire territory was pushed to submission by the superior visitors.In 1920, Kenya finally became a colony .The black majority suffered racial segregation , forced labour , hefty taxes among other autocracies by the white authorities .This forced Kenyans to start struggle for independence .Various parts of the country formed associations to voice their concerns , but they too achieved nothing meaningful as they were tribal based , however the participated in the struggle. They included but not limited to;

Kikuyu Central Association for the Agikuyu of the Central regionThe Kavirondo Taxpayers Association for the Luo of the Kavirondo (Nyanza)regionTaita Hills Association for the Taita of the Coastal region

It is from this associations that nationalists arose. The nationalists who teamed together to bring up national organizations that preached a united front to fight for our independence. This united approach led to the birth of Kenya African Union ( KAU) which had a national outlook .KAU made a huge impact in the struggle for liberation by producing the first black member of the Legislative Council -the then legislation body ,Eliud Mathu .KAU faced its own turbulances , of course there was intimidation from the colonial government .At that particular time , an aggressive uprising was developing in the central Kenya .KAU was struggling with conflicts among it’s leaders ; some preferring to be conservatives and the other faction supporting a forceful approach to deal with the colonialists .The coming of Jomo Kenyatta to the helm of the association never helped much as he watch it crumble down and finally being banned by the authorities after the state of emergency.At the same time , the uprising in the central region had grown into a full blown military group (MAU MAU) , roaring torture to the white settlers , plunging the colony into mass disorder .The colonialists could handle this no more , calling for the state of emergency on the October , 20 ,1952 .All political groupings were banned and the leadership of KAU brought to book. On the same day ,six leaders were arrested as they were alleged to have sponsored the MAU MAU uprising.Those arrested were ;Jomo Kenyatta ,Paul Ngei ,Achieng Oneko ,Kungu Karumba, Fred Kubai and Bildad Kaggia who were tried at Kapenguria. After the emergency , the colony entered full crisis as no one seemed to back off .This made the government to think of the what had seemed impossible , granting Kenyans self rule .Between the period of 1952 -1960 , a series of reforms took place preparing Africans for political leadership .The ban on political parties was uplifted leading to the formation of political parties .The major tribes ganged up to form KANU under the leadership of James Gichuru , Oginga Odinga and Thomas Mboya .The lesser tribes feeling left out formed KADU under the leadership of Ronald Ngala , Daniel Moi and Masinde Muliro .In 1960. , the 1st Lancaster House Conference was called to discuss pertinent issues before granting Kenya self rule , two years later , its second edition was organized to draft the nation’s constitution.Jomo Kenyatta was released from prison to come and lead KANU , which triumphed in the independence elections. Thus , on the first day of June , 56 years ago , the colonial government granted Kenya internal self rule (Madaraka) , but the Governor was still the head of the new nation , representing the crown .On 12th , December of the same year ,Kenya finally became an independent nation as the prime minister was the top authority .A year later the constitution was changed to make Kenya a republic with a powerful presidential system as opposed to the initial Westminster system.And that’s the story of Madaraka!😂Lincoln Oyugi.


By Lincoln Oyugi

Just as Isaac Newton died a virgin, I'll die a writer!

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