How Mudavadi’s Father Brought Moi to Politics Replacing Drunk MP

Former President the late Daniel arap Moi rose from a humble schoolteacher to become one of the longest-serving presidents in Africa thanks to the help of a school inspector.

His biography Moi at 90, details how elders decided to send Moi to school after he was found not to be a good herdsboy.

“On no day would he return home with a full herd: One or two animals would always be missing. The missionaries were God-sent as the elders immediately decided that this boy [Moi] should be given to them,” a family member Joseph Chesire is quoted.

Moi went joined Kapsabet High school in Keiyo District and later attended Tambach Teachers Training College in the same district. 


A past photo of former president Daniel Moi during a political rally

He started working as a teacher in 1946 where he rose to the role of a headmaster at  Kabarnet Intermediate School before his resignation in 1954.

In 1955, John ole Tameno, the former representative of the Legislative Council in Rift Valley quit his role due to heavy drinking and suspected connections to the freedom movement, where he was immediately replaced by Moi.

In October 1955, the colonial era electoral college selected Moi from a list of eight nominees, marking a start in his political life.

Moi was among the only four Africans to represent regions in the Legislative Council.

According to an article by The Standard published in October 2018, it took the effort of Moses Mudavadi (ANC Party leader Musalia Mudavadi’s father) who was a colonial-era school inspector to convince Moi to leave his job as headmaster and join politics.

Although reluctant at first, Mudavadi ultimately brought Moi to the political field, where he grew from regional leadership to the highest office in the land.

Mudavadi’s role towards Moi’s political success would later lead to Moi appointing him as a Minister for Local Government until his death in 1989.

During his time in politics, Moses Mudavadi was very close to President Moi and often regarded as one of the very few politicians around Moi who could dare to disagree with the President or tell him the truth when everyone else was cowering with platitudes.

“In the 80s, Moses Mudavadi’s Mululu home in Vihiga County was like a mini-State House often playing host to delegations from all over the country with petitions for the then powerful Minister for Local Government to take forward to President Moi,” the publication reported.

A past photo of former minister Moses Budamba MUdavadi
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