Jamhuri Day, also known as Republic Day, is a holiday that’s celebrated in Kenya on December 12th annually. In Kenya, this is a national holiday that officially marks the date when the country became a republic in 1964. This was approximately 18-months after the country had gained self-rule from the United Kingdom.
The History Of Jamhuri Day
Although German colonists had a presence in Kenya after the German military was asked to put down a revolt in the 1880s against the German East Africa Company, the area would come under British control. In 1888, the British East African Company was granted a charter, but when the company became bankrupt, the British government took control over the colony. Kenya would remain a part of the British East Africa protectorate until it became a British crown colony in 1920.
Over the years, disputes over the land were exceedingly common and led to rebellions such as the Mau Mau Rebellion in 1952. In 1957, the first direct elections took place in the country and the Kenya African National Union formed the first Kenyan government. In 1963, Kenya gained self-rule from the U.K and it became a republic on December 12, 1964.
Facts About Kenya
Since Jamhuri Day is a celebration of Kenyan independence, this is a good time for us to give our readers some facts about this beautiful county. Below are all of the facts we were able to come up with about Kenya while we were researching this holiday.
- Approximately 75% of working Kenyans are employed in agriculture.
- Kenya has an elected President and a Parliament.
- The main exports of Kenya are herbs and tea, but exports also include vehicles, plastics, and machinery.
- Coffee is also one of Kenya’s main exports.
- Although English and Swahili are the two official languages of Kenya, there are also dozens of indigenous languages spoken as well.
- Over half of the country’s population lives in poverty.
- Kenya is about the same size as Texas.
- Kenya doesn’t have a middle class. There’s an upper class and a lower class only.
- Over 40 different ethnic groups live in Kenya.
- Kenya is home to over 70 tribes.
- Approximately 80% of Kenyans are Christians.
Observing Jamhuri Day
This holiday is observed with a variety of different political speeches, parades, and feasts that reflect the country’s cultural heritage. The country is also addressed by the President of Kenya. One ceremony that happens every year is the Trooping Of The Color Of The Kenya Defence Forces. This ceremony takes place before noon after the President of Kenya takes the national salute and inspects the military parade. The number one guard then prepares to receive the colors. When the colors are handed over, the Kenya National Anthem is played and then there’s a slow march. During the march, the song that’s normally played is “By Land & Sea.”