History of the late Retired President Daniel arap Moi

Written By: Rose Welimo

The late Retired President Daniel Arap Moi will be interred at his home in Kabarak on Wednesday.

Retired president Daniel Toroitich arap Moi was born on 2nd September 1924 in Kuriengwo village, Sacho location, Baringo County.

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He was named after his father Kimoi arap Chebii who died in 1928 when he was only four years old. He was born the 5th child and named Toroitich meaning welcome home the cattle.

His elder brother, Tuitoek, became his guardian. He started school in 1934 at Africa Inland Mission (AIM) School at Kabartonjo.

Moi was baptised Daniel in October 1936 and transferred to African Inland mission at Kapsabet.

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Moi later attended Kapsabet Teacher Training College, after its relocation from Kabartonjo, from 1945 to 1947.

Later he became the headmaster of a school in the Keiyo District. He worked as a teacher from 1946 until 1955.

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He later joined Kagumo Teacher’s College and taught at Tambach Teacher’s Training College.

Daniel Moi married Lena, the daughter of prominent Eldama Ravine farmer Paul Bomet, in 1950. The two were blessed with eight children – five sons and three daughters. Lena, a trained teacher herself, later took up the role of a full-time housewife to raise the children as Moi’s political career flourished.

In 1955 Moi entered politics when he was elected Member of the Legislative Council for Rift Valley. He replaced Dr. John ole Tameno, the former representative who had had to quit due to heavy drinking and suspected connections to the freedom movement.

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In 1957 Moi was re-elected Member of the Legislative Council for Rift Valley. Moi was part of the Kenyan delegation at the Lancaster House Conferences in London, which drafted the country’s first post-independence constitution, and in 1961 became Minister of Education in the pre-independence government.

In 1960 he founded the Kenya African Democratic Union (KADU) with Ronald Ngala to challenge the Kenya African National Union (KANU) led by Jomo Kenyatta.


After Kenya gained independence on 12 December 1963, Kenyatta convinced Moi that KADU and KANU should be merged to complete the process of decolonisation.

Accordingly, KADU dissolved and joined KANU in 1964. The only real challenge to KANU’s dominance came from the Kenya People’s Union, starting in 1966.

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Moi was elected to the Kenyan parliament in 1963 from Baringo North. From 1966 until his retirement in 2002 he served as the Baringo Central MP. Moi became Minister for Home Affairs in 1964, and then Vice-President in 1967.

When Jomo Kenyatta died on 22 August 1978, Moi became acting president. He was sworn in as the second President of Kenya on 14 October 1978.

Moi won elections in 1992 and 1997 following the introduction of multi partism in the county. He retired peacefully in 2002 handing over power to his successor Mwai Kibaki.

The late Retired President Daniel Arap Moi who died on 4th February, 2020 will be             interred at his home in Kabarak on Wednesday.


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