• No one, my age, would say that they did not love and appreciate that packet of milk, especially when it came just after having lunch.
• It was something that none of us would have wanted to miss out on.
A dispute arose between the Wind and the Sun about who was the stronger of the two.
They decided to settle the issue by seeing who could get a passing traveler to take off his cloak first.
The Wind blew with all his might, but the harder the Wind blew, the tighter the traveller grasped his cloak and wrapped it around himself. Then the Sun shined it's soft, kind rays, and as the traveller felt more of the genial warmth, he finally removed his cloak. The Sun was declared the winner.
The story is used to illustrate kindness towards others as a clear way of winning. And if there is one man whose multiple acts of kindness has been felt across the nation, it was the late Mzee Daniel arap Moi.
In primary school, my favourite days were Tuesdays and Thursdays when a lorry would snake into the compound and guys wearing white coats would start unloading the milk popularly known as Maziwa ya Nyayo and distributing them to us.
No one, my age, would say that they did not love and appreciate that packet of milk, especially when it came just after having lunch. It was something that none of us would have wanted to miss out on.
In my first year of high school, we were notified that President Moi had a function around the area and would be passing outside the school. We quickly finished our lunch of githeri and rushed outside the gate and waited patiently for him to pass by.
Once he did, all of the students asked him to stop which he did, he requested us to improve our national rankings and gave the headmaster Sh50,000 for the school. After he left, we discussed with the administration and agreed to share the money amongst the students, and each received Sh200.
Moi would make such stops whether it was to greet students or women who would sell bananas to him on the roadside. He made time for the common man whenever he would transverse the country.
But many Kenyans can relate with such tales and we can all attest to how the former President had a passion for education. It is not a wonder that there are numerous institutions and facilities within schools that are named after him.
If there is a Kenyan leader with photos of many gowns or surrounded by students, it is the late President Moi. There was no university graduation that was complete without President Moi present as the guest of honor.
If you visited newspaper libraries, you will find multiple photos of President Moi at school functions. The former teacher made it a duty for him to ensure education was prioritised by his government and set a clear and concrete foundation.
For President Moi, every child deserved an education and this was why he worked hard to ensure that access to secondary education was expanded. He also ensured more universities were established, including allowing for private ones.
On numerous occasions growing up, he would contact my parents and paid my school fees. This is the Moi I knew and appreciate – one who cares about Kenyan children’s education and their future.
Mzee Moi was an African statesman an icon, and his generosity was well-known to all. His focus on children was not in doubt and today, we have many schools because he dedicated his life to ensuring that they were there.
In March 2011 when 67 students were killed in the Kyanguli fire tragedy, President Moi ensured he went there to comfort the students and also assess the damage. This is how much Moi cared about the Kenyan children.
President Moi also joined and encouraged Kenyans and students to build gabions as a way to protect the environment. He was also keen on 4K Club and Young Farmers Club as a way to teach students farming and self-sustainability.
His big heart towards education as a key to the future of this country will never be forgotten.