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9 Intriguing Facts About Jomo Kenyatta You May Not Know

Celebrating the Life of Kenya’s First President Jomo Kenyatta


Name Changes

Jomo Kenyatta was born circa 1894 in the nation of British East Africa, which would later become Kenya. His birth name was Kamau Wa Ngengi, which was reflective of his Kikuyu heritage. In 1914, he changed his name to Johnson Kamau after being baptized and then to Jomo Kenyatta in 1922.



Personal Hardships

In his youth, Kenyatta suffered many personal tragedies that shaped his life. His father, Moigoi, died before was 10 years old. Because of tradition in his village, Kenyatta’s mother, Wamboi, had to marry his uncle. Then she died during childbirth. At just 10 years old, he lost his entire family. All of these events led him to a Scottish mission where he learned about European culture firsthand. Living and studying there inspired his outlook.

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