Kenya

Singh, Makhan (1913 – 1973)

Biography of Makhan Singh, who translated Marx's Capital while in detention in India, was a central figure in Kenya's early trade union movement in the 1940s, was imprisoned for 16 years, then sidelined by Jomo Kenyatta's post-colonial government.

The post-war strike wave in East, West, and Southern Africa

From the end of the Second World War until the mid-'60s there was a wave of strikes in British East and West Africa, French West Africa, South Africa and Zimbabwe. The history of this class struggle has been neglected by both mainstream historians and most revolutionary tendencies based in Europe and the US.

The Nairobi General Strike, 1950: From Protest to Insurgency

Government Road, Nairobi, 1950

The Nairobi General Strike [1950] was the culmination of Kenya’s post war strike wave and urban upheaval. An unprecedented upsurge occurred with the general strikes in Mombasa [1947] led by the African Workers Federation [A.W.F.] and in Nairobi by the East African Trades Union Congress [E.A.T.U.C.]. While this has been termed and treated as a city wide strike, there is enough evidence to suggest a movement that went some way beyond Nairobi. The extent of the cohesion and reciprocal impacts amongst urban and rural Africans involved in the strike were underplayed by the colonial government and the media that followed it.

The East African Railway Strike, 1959-60: labour’s challenge of inter-territorialism

David Hyde examines a pivotal working-class struggle which erupted within East Africa’s transport system near the end of the colonial period. Though this was arguably the most important working-class struggle to occur during the decolonisation process within Britain’s African colonies, it has been rarely acknowledged and barely attended to.

The Mau Mau uprising, 1952-1956

Mau Mau fighters, 1954

A short overview of the Mau Mau rebellion against the British Empire in Kenya, which was brutally suppressed by the colonial administration.

Uber drivers in Kenya on indefinite strike

Drivers on strike

Drivers for Uber, Taxify, Little and Mondo-Ride have been on indefinite strike since 11th September over working conditions and high commission rates.

Interview: 100 days of the Kenya nurses strike

Nurses on strike in Kenya

Nurses in Kenya have been on strike for more than 100 days. The government has declared the strike illegal and started sacking nurses. Nurses have continued their action despite this, with an almost total shutdown of public hospitals across Kenya and demonstrations weekly. Mike Harman interviewed Nahashon, one of the nurses on strike, for libcom.org.

1947: Mombasa General Strike

Mombasa, 1947

In 1947 the city of Mombasa was paralysed by a general strike by its black African workforce in an attempt to end pay disparities, especially along colour lines.

Detained: A Writer's Prison Diary by Ngugi wa Thiong'o

Detained: A Writer's Prison Diary

Ngugi wa Thiong'o was detained in Kamĩtĩ Maximum Security Prison in Nairobi from 31 December 1977 to 12 December 1978. This diary was written in prison.

Kenyan police murder four squatters during eviction

Four people have been killed and ten others seriously injured when police opened fire on squatters protesting about being evicted from the 1200 acre Twiga Estate farm in Kenya, which they have lived on since 1952.