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Daniel Arap Moi dead at 95

Publish date: 10 February 2020
Issue Number: 859
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Category: Obituary

Former Kenyan President Daniel Arap Moi, who ruled the country with an iron fist between 1978 and 2002, has died at the Nairobi Hospital at the age of 95. President Uhuru Kenyatta, who announced the death, declared a period of national mourning and said Moi would receive a state funeral. The New York Times reports that 15 years after Kenya won independence from Britain in 1963, Moi became President following the death of Jomo Kenyatta, the country’s founding father. He won Western support with anticommunist policies during the Cold War. However, after suppressing opposition and consolidating power in a single-party state, he began a 24-year dictatorial reign. Moi won five successive elections and he exercised absolute power. The report notes that the post-independence constitution vested legislative authority in a National Assembly and provided for an independent judiciary. However, Moi had the right to dismiss judges and other officials, and he and his party controlled legislation and the courts, overriding decisions and suppressing democratic reforms.

Daniel Arap Moi profile

Full report in The New York Times