Pio Gama Pinto Biography
Pio Gama Pinto was born on 31st March 1927 in Nairobi and died on 25th February 1965. He was a Kenyan journalist, politician and freedom fighter.
Pio Gama Pinto Early life and Education Background
Pio Gama Pinto was born to a Kenyan Asian family of Konkani Goan Catholic descent. His parents were Goan immigrant hailing from the Indian states of Goa and Maharashtra, his father was an official in the colonial government of Kenya while his mother was a housewife.
At age eight, he was sent to India for his education and spent the next nine years there, passing his matriculation exams at St. Joseph’s High School, Arpora and then studying science at Karnatak College, Dharwar for two years before joining the Indian Air Force in 1944 as an apprentice ground engineer.
Pio Gama Pinto Political career
After his education he took up a job in the Posts and Telegraph office in Bombay, participated in a general strike and became a founding member of the Goa National Congress whose aim was the liberation of Goa from Portuguese rule.
When only seventeen, he started an agitation in Bombay against the Portuguese colonial occupation of Goa.His political activism soon made it necessary for him to return to Kenya to avoid being arrested and deported to the Tarrafal concentration camp in Cape Verde. Kenya at that time was still under British rule.
He turned to journalism and worked with the Colonial Times and the Daily Chronicle. In 1954, five months after his marriage, he was rounded up in the notorious Operation Anvil and spent the next four years in detention on Manda Island. He was kept in restriction from early 1958 until October 1959 at the remote Kabarnet.
In 1960 he founded the Kenya African National Union (KANU) newspaper Sauti Ya KANU, and later, Pan African Press, of which he subsequently became Director and Secretary. He was actively involved in the 1961 Elections to make KANU victorious and, in 1963, was elected a Member of the Central Legislative Assembly.
In July 1964, Pio Gama Pinto was appointed a Specially Elected Member of the House of Representatives. Also in 1964, he worked late hours to establish the Lumumba Institute, which was principally used to train Party Officials. He was a member of the Board of Governors and took keen interest in its functions.
Pio Gama Pinto Assassination
On 25th February 1965 in Nairobi, Pio Gama Pinto was shot down at very close range on the driveway while waiting for the gate to open. He was with his daughter in his car at the time of his killing. Kisilu Mutua was arrested for the killing but after 35 years in prison he was released through the presidential pardon during president Daniel Arap Moi era.
Pio Gama Pinto Family and Children
Pio Gama Pinto left his wife, Emma Dias and three children Linda, Malusha and Tereshka,
Pio Gama Pinto Photo