, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 25 – Veteran politician John Keen is dead.
Keen, aged 90 passed away Sunday morning while undergoing treatment in hospital, according to his family.
“Mzee passed away early this morning at the Aga Khan Hospital, Nairobi while undergoing treatment. We appreciate your understanding and support as the family deals with this transition,” a statement signed by his son Anthony Keen said.
He said funeral arrangements would be announced later.
Keen once served as Secretary General of the Democratic Party.
President Uhuru Kenyatta was among leaders who mourned Keen, saying few Kenyans can claim a life of such courage, sacrifice, or achievement.
“In colonial times, he stood firm in defence of African rights. By 1962, his energy and devotion to nationalist ideals had made him KANU’s organising secretary. In that position, he prepared the party for the elections which saw an African government take power in this country for the first time. ”
He said once independence was won, Keen represented Kajiado North in Parliament with distinction, and also served in Cabinet.
“Throughout his life, he was generous with his time and property, outspoken in defence of what he believed was right, and a believer in a strong government that worked for its people.”
He said with his death, Kenya had lost a man who fought for our liberty, and a patriot who served Kenya selflessly.
Keen was recently in the news when the High Court rejected an attempt to subject him to a DNA test in a paternity case.
High Court judge Mumbi Ngugi ruled that Ruby Kimani, 35, did not establish any biological relation with Keen.