Military Deployed to Secure Nairobi's Uhuru Gardens

  • The historical monument at Uhuru Gardens, Nairobi.
    The historical monument at Uhuru Gardens, Nairobi.
  • The Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) has been tasked to secure Nairobi's Uhuru Gardens which are currently closed for Renovations, Sports, Culture and Heritage CS Amina Mohamed announced on Thursday, June 11.

    During a tour of the popular recreational venue, the CS accompanied by National Museums of Kenya (NMK) Director-General Mzalendo Kibunja announced that the grounds would be closed for a period of one year to have them restored to their original condition.

    While calling for more protection of the grounds, CS Amina observed that the structures and monuments in the park had been worn down by natural elements as well as human interference. The military would, therefore, secure the gardens during this period.  

    "The grounds need to be renovated and historical monuments put back to the right shapes. The closure will see the renovation of the sculptures and monuments that have been destroyed. We are also calling for partnerships to renovate these grounds, which are significant in telling the Kenyan story,” she stated.

    Sports CS Amina Mohamed (right) and National Museums of Kenya (NMK) Director-General Mzalendo Kibunja touring Uhuru Gardens on June 12, 2020.
    Sports CS Amina Mohamed (right) and National Museums of Kenya (NMK) Director-General Mzalendo Kibunja touring Uhuru Gardens on June 11, 2020.

    The park located along Lang'ata road is Kenya’s largest Memorial Park with its name Uhuru, a Swahili word meaning freedom.

    The gardens were officially declared a National Monument in 1966 because of their historical importance.

    "Of importance to note is that it is Kenya’s birthplace. This is where the Kenyan flag was first raised and thus marking the very first year of independence on the 12th December 1963," a statement on the National Museums of Kenya reads in part.

    A historical monument at Uhuru Gardens.
    A historical monument at Uhuru Gardens.

    Within the garden are two monuments commemorating Kenya’s independence, and a Mugumo (fig) tree.

    The Mugumo tree is symbolic as it was planted on the spot where the Union Jack (British flag) was brought down and Kenya’s national flag was first hoisted.

    The site is also a conservation area with its diversity of native flora and fauna of the savannah woodland.

    Uhuru Gardens are a popular recreational area bordering the popular Carnivore Grounds and is metres away from the Nairobi Safari Walk.

    The gardens are popular with family and friend groups seeking tranquility, a must-visit for schools and in recent times has gained popularity as an events venue for corporate launches, concerts, weddings, film location which are offered at a cost.

    A dilapidated historical monument at Uhuru Gardens, Nairobi.
    A dilapidated historical monument at Uhuru Gardens, Nairobi.