Nairobi News


Man braves chilly weather to give abandoned Tom Mboya statue facelift

A man on Tuesday decided to brace the chilly weather in the city center to clean the neglected Tom Mboya statue erected on Moi Avenue.

The unidentified man took the initiative by climbing onto the monument and first shielded the stature from the cold and the rains by wrapping it with a cloak then started to clean it with his sweater.

The statue located near the Kenya National Archives was unveiled in 2011 by former President Mwai Kibaki and then Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

The monument had significant features such as flamingos which signified the airlift programme which was started by the late Mboya while the rock, upon which the statue stands, represents the slain politician’s ancestral home, Rusinga Island.

There was once water surrounding the rock which represented Lake Victoria, a fresh water lake in Nyanza region where Rusinga Island is located.

Other significant features were the Coat of Arms, while the statue’s raised hand represents Mr Mboya’s fight for workers welfare as a pioneer of the trade union movement.

The Tom Mboya square and monument, is now occupied by hawkers who sell their wares oblivious of their national significance.

It is also a magnet for Kenyans who take pictures with the statue in memory of the late charismatic politician.

It has become a tradition for fans of 18-time premier league football champions Gor Mahia to converge at the Sh20 million statue before and after every match.

Thomas Joseph Odhiambo Mboya, who was one time the Member of Parliament for Nairobi Central Constituency (now Kamukunji Constituency) and a cabinet minister, was one of the founding members of Gor.

The pioneer trade unionist, educationist, Pan Africanist, independence activist, independence party Kanu Secretary General and one of Kenya’s founding fathers, was assassinated on July 5, 1969 in Nairobi.