Daniel Teroitich Arap Moi was born in 2nd September 1925. He is Kenya’s 2nd President who served Kenya from 1978 to 2002. Through popular agitation and external pressures, he was forced to allow multiparty elections in 1991; he led his party, Kenya African National Union (KANU) to victory in the 1992 and 1997 elections. Prior to becoming President, he served as the third Vice President from 1967 to 1978.
He is popularly known to Kenyans as ‘Nyayo‘, meaning “footsteps”, as he often said he was following in the footsteps of the first President, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.
When Jomo Kenyatta passed away on 22 August 1978, Moi became the acting president. Per the Constitution, a special presidential election for the balance of Kenyatta’s term was to be held on 8th November, 90 days later. That never happened as the Cabinet held a Special Cabinet meeting without Moi and decided that no one else was interested and went around the country campaigning for him to be declared elected unopposed. He was therefore declared President of Kenya in September 1978.
Moi is believed to have ruled under the guidance of his ‘Nyayo’ motto, which showed his determination to follow in Mzee Kenyatta’s footsteps, with three words underlying his leadership philosophy; Peace, Love and Unity.
According to The Standard some of his key achievements for the country include allowing multi-party democracy, execution of the 8-4-4 education system, major youth and women empowerment programs, expansion of health, education and general infrastructure development.
The free school milk programme is said to have raised primary school enrollment by 23.3 percent from 2,994,991 in 1978 to 3,698,216 in 1979. With that, farmers were encouraged to increase production of milk to match the new demand.It is estimated that about a quarter of Kenya’s population benefited directly from the free milk programme, which stayed in place for 20 years.
He is branded the “Professor of Politics” due to his long rule of 24 years, the longest in Kenyan history to date. At 95, he is currently the oldest living former Kenyan president.
Below are some of the institution, streets named after Moi;
- Moi International Airport
- Moi University
- Moi Referral Hospital
- Moi Girls School
- Moi Educational Center
- Moi Airbase
- Moi Avenue
- Moi Primary School