Why self rule is not the same thing as independence

“Today, I am delighted to return to these hallowed grounds. Of Uhuru Gardens to commemorate our 59th Madaraka Day. 

I am overjoyed because, after 59 years of self-rule. This is the first time we are celebrating Madaraka Day at these hallowed grounds.

Madaraka Day is significant in our history because. It is on this day in June 1963 that the Founding Fathers of our nation replaced the outgoing colonial government.

First indigenous Government of Kenya

And formed the first indigenous Government of Kenya. And with this act, we achieved self-rule or Madaraka. With Mzee Jomo Kenyatta as our first Prime Minister.

However, self-rule was NOT the same thing as independence.  With Madaraka, we had merely surmounted the first hurdle in our liberation struggle. 

It was Six months after the first Madaraka Day. That we secured our full independence on the 12th of December, 1963.

Also read

Sacred grounds of Uhuru gardens

On that day, the nation was summoned to these sacred grounds of Uhuru Gardens.  An elated people listened with tears in their eyes. As our national anthem played for the first time.

And then we cheered in boundless joy as our flag was hoisted and the flag of the colonizers lowered. 

This act of raising our national flag was not an exercise in symbolism. Or a sheer sentimental exploit. It was a sign that we had achieved sovereignty as a Nation. 

A call to civic duty

But fundamentally, it was a call to civic duty and responsibility to our people. Once hoisted, our Founding Fathers reminded us.

That the flag was not just a cloth painted in designs of four colors.  Instead, it was a painting of the national wounds.

And scars we bear from our liberation struggle. Coated with an illumination of our shared aspirations – our future.

A picture of the blood we shed

It was and still remains a picture of the blood we shed. To regain what we had lost.  It is a reflection of the dignity of our black heritage and the pride we restored. 

And because the ultimate act of every liberator is to lay down their weapon, the shield and spear on our national flag is a symbol of victory. 

But it is also a notice of readiness should our “heritage of splendour” be threatened.

Read more at https://thebigissue.co.ke