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Daniel arap Moi: As Kenyans, the President learned to laugh,

Feb 16,2020 10:01 am

As The State funeral of Kenya's former President Daniel arap Moi, a seasoned journalist, Joseph Warungu recalls that he once studied an all-powerful leader, but the People to laugh at him, as his influence waned.

Thus, the effect of the late President was on the Kenyan psyche, that some never imagine that he would leave the political scene, or the earth itself.

But last week, the country's longest-serving leader, died at the age of 95 years - almost two decades after leaving office.

In a public display of affection, tens of thousands attended his State funeral on Tuesday. For the last Three Days were long queues in the Parliament building for the viewing of Mr Moi's body lay in State . But some came to check for himself that the former State -died-in-chief had in fact.

People buy memorial could badge, as you wait in line to have his body

Mr Moi has been as divisive In Death as he was in life.

He was once described by his political opponents as a "passing cloud". But as soon as he took over The Presidency in the year 1978 by Founding Father Jomo Kenyatta , he was a durable Clear Blue sky, was ever-present and alert, watching with eagle eyes on every Kenyan and every corner of the country.

'the Status of a deity,'

As journalists, we were used to The Presence of Special Branch officers trailed us everywhere, and at the same time a very poor effort of undercover police work.

As he entangled his grip solidified after coming to power, provokes reactions of awe, and of Deep Fear , which he heard to the same extent, a mere President , and assumed the status of a deity.

the Kenyans began to refer to him officially as Mtukufu, which is the Swahili translation of "His Excellency", but is usually a term in reference to God.

There was nothing to reign Holy to the Lord Ministry of the interior, the 24-year-olds.

the Political dissent - and it was a lot of him, especially after the coup attempt in 1982 - was met with strong Patriotic defense of the Mtukufu.

Many People were arrested, some fled into exile, some were gone and others, including a key minister, killed.

The rest of The Nation was convinced, to embrace you, a hero through praise and the constant lecture in the evening a loyalty pledge.

Kenyan Patriotic songs written role, with The President and his signature ivory club in the a main.

'Moi was everywhere,'

Many of us can still remember The Words of these songs in the bedroom.

the Christians say, God inhabits the praises of his People . Mr Moi was inhabited, the lives of his People .

He was everywhere, on money, in the office of the portraits staring at the workers, in statues, in The Names of the airports, stadiums, roads, universities, milk, buses, schools and hospitals.

He stared at it through the many eyes of The Secret police.

politicians was poet laureate in the competition, which was more loyal to President Moi.

President Moi, the portrait can be seen could be anywhere fought

helper, faster than any other in the praise Mtukufu, with a Minister of education, Peter Oloo Aringo, describes him as the "Prince of peace".

a musician, composed songs, stating that The Animals on the ground and The Birds in the air were full of awe and praise for Mr Moi.

Mr Aringo, one of The Most famous court jester, known for his eloquence. He unleashed his words at public meetings, which would not be out of place in the Love Songs .

"Your Excellency, even the trees, the corn and plants swaying to the sound of the nyayo nyayo", he once said, referring to the Swahili word for "footsteps", as a term of endearment for The President .

This suffocating atmosphere of political patronage, the hero-worship, and the ease with which you could end up in a police cell, left no room for criticism of Mr Moi.

That was arrived to satire.

to be published The First caricature of President Moi, was in November 1992.

With The First multi-party elections, after a change in The Constitution just around The Corner -year-veteran of the Kenyan cartoonist, Paul Kelemba, popularly known as Maddo, joined hands with Pius Nyamora, editor of society magazine, and decided to test The Waters .

The magazine is a colored cartoon shows The President to have a race to win on The Track by hurdles on the way of his opponent.

Maddo recalled the reactions of the People on the bold cartoon.

"It was sheer excitement. Some People were in shock, while others become worried about buying a copy, because you could be arrested if you carry a seditious publication," he told arts journalist Kimani wa Wanjiru.

'crack in Moi-armour'

According to the publication, The Editor and his cartoonist waited with bated breath. But there is nothing happening. No phone calls, no arrests.

has to go, Neither Mr Moi-agents, and to buy all the copies, as they previously had done, with publications, which they perceived as harmful to the Kenyans.

Reflect on why he took such a risk, said Maddo, the Time Was ripe.

"The Thing that was on my head, as I have the cartoon sketched was that we are on the threshold of the interior Ministry of the last years of absolute political control.

"I was convinced that he would lose the election and if I was locked, it wouldn't take long until I was free again. "

Reuters Daniel arap Moi

Kenya' s the longest serving President

1924born in agriculture in the community

1967becomes Vice-President

1978becomes President

1982coup attempt

2002steps foiled down as President

2020dies in Nairobi

source: government of Kenya

Maddo was wrong. Mr. Moi won the next two elections and is not out of the office until 2002.

But, the race track cartoon in 1992, revealed a chink in The President 's armor, and soon after, he was Fair Game for other cartoonists and comedians.

Six Years later, a group of student actors from the Kenyatta University ventured into political satire with Mr Moi - or a version of The Head of State - as The Star of The Show .

Walter of Monga are perfected cough his portrayal of Mr. Moi down to his signature, raw voice, accent, Body Language and The Gap in The President of the lower teeth.

'Moi laughed to himself,'

the audience went wild, as you saw, your head of State to The Nation apply, looking his usual dapper self, And Then break in the gravity-defying dance moves with the waist, entered with speeds that could easily stand out of a helicopter.

When the comedy are a trio of Monga and two colleagues on the TV screen, they became instant celebrities.

their only concern was how President Moi would react to its display on the screen.

Joseph Odindo, who had the editorial responsibility for the program said to me, she is discreet said requests in the State House that The President was a Big Fan .

"Moi loved the comedy show made and always have time to see it.

"we were told he would crack, especially when he saw, dancing like The Other Moi way," said Mr Odindo said.

More about the death of Daniel arap Moi:

as soon As Kenyans, it was clear that it was safe, to first laugh, Mr Moi, And Then with The Man himself, satire has been a great vehicle for the easing of tensions, of its rule.

But his legacy is not to be trifled with.

With grand corruption and mismanagement of the economy, and, finally, the reduction in 60% of Kenyans come to poverty, and Mr Moi's victims, to remember her painful ordeal in the hands of the regime, some find it to forgive it's hard, man.

By the time he left office in 2002, Kenyans not only had taken back their power from his strong hand, some actually had the courage to pelt The President 's motorcade with mud, as it arrived for the swearing-in ceremony of his successor, Mwai Kibaki .

even Though Mr Moi is now gone, the current President , Uhuru Kenyatta , and his Deputy, William Ruto , were his two acolytes.

Satire is still alive, but it feels like the laughter died a long time ago, as The Legacy of the corruption and mismanagement of the economy have not disappeared.

kenya, daniel arap moi

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