Meet Kenyan Who Was The First Fully Qualified African Nurse

  • Rosa Oyoo, Ida Odinga's Mother File
  • Most Kenyans marvelled at Argwings Kodhek's feat when he made history in 1956 by becoming the first African in Kenya to be admitted to the Bar as an advocate.

    However, many do not know that the first fully trained nurse of Kenya was Ida Odinga's mother; Rosa Oyoo.

    Mrs Oyoo was married to Nehemiah Oyoo who worked as a civil servant and a medical assistant in various hospitals in the nation.

    Ida Odinga's Mother speaking during an event: Her mother, Rosa Oyoo, was the first fully qualified African Nurse

    She was trained at King's African Rifles Hospital, later known as the King George Hospital which was later changed to Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH).

    Mama Rosa was a native from Luhyaland in an area called Khwisero at the heart of Kakamega County.

    Interestingly, this striking lady was also an aunt to the long time serving Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) secretary general Francis Atwoli, making the firebrand COTU leader Ida's cousin.

    Mzee Nehemiah was posted to work in Migori where he bought a farm, with Rose joining him after a while.

    Unfortunately, Ida's father passed away in 1959, and his grief-stricken wife refused to remarry as was the luo custom at the time. She vowed to work hard on her own piece of farm and single-handedly raised her six children.

    Raila later on met Ida and after a period of courtship gathered up the courage to propose to her. A colorful wedding ensued and the two are still an item to date.

    Photo showing Raila and Ida's wedding in 1973