Kenya’s exPresident Mwai Kibaki dies at 90

By Orowo Victoria

Former President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya has died at 90. He was the country’s third president Kibaki’s death was confirmed in a statement issued by Kenyatta, who said the country would observe a period of national mourning from Friday until his burial.

His political career spanned decades, including serving as vice president to Daniel arap Moi, the man he replaced as president in 2002. Kibaki, an economist and passionate golf player, left behind a complicated legacy when he stepped down after his second presidential term ended in 2013, The Trumpet gathered.

He not only oversaw a new constitution that brought hope for change, he led Kenya during a period of robust economic growth and major infrastructure developments. But he was also in command during the most violent election in the country’s history, when more than 1,200 people died in bloody ethnic battles after disputed 2007 polls. Kibaki served as president from 2002 to 2013, winning elections against Kenyatta and ending four decades of one-party rule.

He came to power promising to fight corruption and transform Kenya’s economy, while he ushered in economic reforms, corruption continued. Kibaki was also hailed in 2010 for shaping a new constitution for Kenya and improving social services. Kenyatta paid tribute to Kibaki as “the gentleman of Kenyan politics” and recalled “his dignity, his diligence, candor, and concern for the well-being of all Kenyans.”

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“Kibaki was a quintessential patriot whose legacy of civic responsibility will continue to inspire generations of Kenyans long into our future,” Kenyatta said. Kenyatta also praised the late president for transforming the country.

“The late former president’s administration conceptualized and spearheaded a transformation in crucial sectors such as education through the globally lauded free primary education program, infrastructure developments in transport and energy and the increasing the availability and the access to health care for his fellow Kenyans,” Kenyatta said.

At the end of two terms, Kibaki handed power to Kenyatta, who was elected in 2013, and retired from politics.

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