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December 13, 2018

Uhuru's sister Kristina recalls life in Lodwar after Jomo Kenyatta arrest

Kristina Platt and Kiambu woman rep Anna Nyokabi in a classroom at Lodwar Primary School on Saturday Photo/RAPHAEL NJOROGE
Kristina Platt and Kiambu woman rep Anna Nyokabi in a classroom at Lodwar Primary School on Saturday Photo/RAPHAEL NJOROGE

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s sister Kristina Pratt on Saturday told the animated story of their life in Lodwar as their father served his prison term.

Kristina narrated how she and her sister Margaret travelled from Gatundu in a relief food truck to join their mother, Mama Ngina, who had already moved to Lodwar.

Their father, Kenya’s first President Jomo Kenyatta, was serving part of his imprisonment at the Northern Kenya town of Lodwar.

“Our journey was two days and when we got to Kitale we were hungry and we each decided to eat food worth 50 cents so we could bring our father the other 50 cent,” Kristina said.

She spoke at Lodwar Primary School where she started her education in standard one and left when she was halfway her standard three.

“When our father was arrested, I was only a few months old and so I had not seen him. So when we got to Lodwar, I was surprised to meet an old man because I expected a tall, energetic and healthy man. But he was even more astonished as he thought I was killed when the colonialists were arresting him,” Kristina said.

She said she used to walk from what is now known as Kenyatta House, where Jomo was under house arrest, to the school.

“We walked from the house, through the hospital compound then the airstrip and then got to the classroom. This is why I say I am back home because this is where I got my foundation,” Kristina said.

She pledged to help the school improve its infrastructure and told Lodwar residents that Uhuru would visit them soon.

“Even our President has his own story of this place and I am sure he can tell you himself,” Kristina said.

Born in October 1961, it is believed that Uhuru was conceived at the Kenyatta House in Lodwar.

Upon conviction and sentencing at Kapenguria on April 8, 1953, Jomo remained in prison in Lokitaung until 1959, before being detained in Lodwar under house arrest for two years.

On April 11, 1961, he was moved to Maralal and on August 14, 1961, he was released and brought to his Gatundu home.

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