Jamhuri Day is a national holiday in Kenya, celebrated on 12 December each year. Jamhuri is the Swahili word for “republic” and the holiday is meant to officially mark the date of Kenya’s independence which happened on 12 December 1963. The country became an independent republic after gaining full self-governance from the United Kingdom on 1st June 1964. Jamhuri Day is regarded as Kenya’s most important day, marked by numerous festivities which celebrate the country’s cultural heritage and looks back at her journey to independence.
History of Jamhuri day
The first colonists from Europe to have a presence in Kenya were German, but in 1890, the region came under control of the Imperial British East Africa Company, and Kenya was part of the British East Africa protectorate until it became a British crown colony in 1920.
Disputes over land were common, leading to the Mau Mau rebellion in 1952, which effectively put Kenya into a state of emergency for the next seven years.
The first direct elections took place in 1957, with the Kenya African National Union led by Jomo Kenyatta forming the first government.
Kenya gained its independence on 12 December 1963, and was admitted into the Commonwealth as a republic exactly one year later, with Jomo Kenyatta as president.
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Security heightened ahead of Jamhuri Day celebrations
UPdated on:11th December 2016
Security has been beefed in Nairobi City and its environs ahead of Monday’s celebrations of the 53rd Jamhuri Day at the Nyayo National Stadium.
The Nairobi Regional Coordinator, Mrs Ann Nge’tich, assured city residents that the government has put in place adequate security measures to arrest criminals who might take advantage of the celebrations.
Mrs Nge’tich added that they have enhanced patrols and are conducting intelligence operations in targeted parts of the city.
“I want to assure all residents and visitors that security has been enhanced on a 24/7 basis as we celebrate this year’s Jamhuri Day tomorrow [Monday] and indeed throughout the remaining days of the year 2016,” she said.
The Nairobi Regional Coordinator urged Kenyans to showcase their patriotism and nationalism by coming out in large numbers to celebrate the national holiday.
“This is the perfect convergence of what unites, our common history, nationhood, and the presidency,” said Mrs Nge’tich, adding that the theme of this year’s celebration is “Patriotism, Unity and Peace”.