Uhuru, Ruto get down as Kenya begins 50th bash

December 11, 2013 10:29 pm
Fireworks marked Kenya's Jubilee celebrations as the clock struck midnight on Dec 12, 2013. Photo/ MIKE KARIUKI
Fireworks marked Kenya’s Jubilee celebrations as the clock struck midnight on Dec 12, 2013. Photo/ MIKE KARIUKI

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 12 – Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto got down to dance and song as the country began festivities to mark the 50 birthday shortly after midnight on Wednesday.

Moments after witnessing the historic hoisting of the Kenyan flag 50 years after independence, Kenyatta and Ruto got off their seats and joined Emmy Kosgei and her group as they performed a popular Kalenjin song – Taunet Nelel.

Kenyatta did a jig to the tune amidst a cheering crowd that had gathered at the historic Uhuru Gardens to mark 50 years after Kenya attained power on December 12, 1963 from Britain.

From the huge crowd, there was pomp and dance as people cheered and waved small flags to accompany the band that played the national anthem to repeat the same exercise that was done 50 years ago at the same venue.

The raising of the flag was accompanied by fireworks.

Various groups including schools performed diverse entertainment all dedicated to mark Kenya’s special day in its history.

Many people also used social media to wish Kenyans a happy birthday.

Some of the messages read; “Kenya at 50 is still a work in progress. The US, that became independent in 1776, is still grappling with homeless people, inequalities, and before Obama came, and health insurance. So we’re doing well, at least not as bad as the civil society thinks.”

“50 years ago, Jomo Kenyatta witnessed as Kenya’s national flag being raised as the country attained independence. Tonight, his son, Uhuru Kenyatta did exactly what his dad did. Maybe in 50 years to come, Uhuru Kenyatta’s son will do exactly what his grandfather and father did. Or may be one of my daughters will,” Joe Ngugi said on Facebook.

Thomas Otieno also wished Kenyans a happy birthday; “Peace, Love and Unity” always prevails among us Kenyans.”

Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero who started off the speeches applauded previous leaders and freedom fighters for getting Kenya where it is today.

Sports and Culture Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario took up to the podium to welcome Ruto who paved way for the President’s speech.

Kenyatta, who spoke for about 14 minutes, called on Kenyans to stay united and shun tribal, religion and other differences that divide Kenyans.

He said unity was the only way Kenya would be successful in fighting its challenges of unemployment and among others poverty.

After Kenyatta’s speech at 1.07am, the crowd was entertained with music.

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