Kibaki's Mang'u Report Card Shows His Brilliance in High School

  • Mwai Kibaki Makerere Honorary
    H.E. Mwai Kibaki delivers a Lecture on 13th February 2015 in the Makerere University Main Hall.
    Makerere University Website
  • The late president Mwai Kibaki's legacy and leadership skills have been traced back to his days at Mang'u High School. 

    A 1947 report card from Kibaki's days at the school, then known as Holy Ghost College, ranked Kibaki first in a class of 32. 

    He scored an impressive 779 marks. In Mathematics which was split into Arithmetic, Geometry and Algebra he scored 77, 66, and 78 respectively.

    In History and Geography, he scored 70 and 86 marks respectively.

    Former President Mwai Kibaki passed away on Friday, April 22, 2022
    Former President Mwai Kibaki passed away on Friday, April 22, 2022
    File

    Young Kibaki was sent to mission school by his peasant father, Kibaki Githinji who believed that he was “not very useful in the garden”.

    "In 1939 a barefoot Kibaki left home for the newly established, 50 cent-a-term Gatuyaini village school put up by the Consolata Missionaries. Here they taught the new arrivals catechism and elementary education. 

    "And thus started Mr Kibaki’s passionate association with education and his Catholic faith. It also launched a brilliant career in academics and politics," his tribute reads.

    From Gatuyaini Primary Kibaki joined Holy Ghost Catholic Missionaries Karima Mission School (now Karima Primary) for the next three years, walking 10 kilometres every day to and from school. 

    He passed his exams and moved to Mathari School, now renamed Nyeri High School and his father had to sell two goats to pay the annual Ksh18 boarding fee. At Mathari, he learned carpentry and masonry and joined fellow students in repairing furniture around the school.

    Kibaki was then admitted to Holy Ghost College, currently known as Mangu High School. 

    After his O Levels, he joined Makerere University where he became the first African to graduate with a first-class honours degree.

    He joined in 1951 for a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics, History and Political Science. He served as Vice Chairman of the Makerere Students Guild (1954-1955). 

    Despite dividing his time between student leadership and studies, he still emerged among the best students in the Faculty of Arts in 1955, graduating with a First Class Honours Degree (BA) in Economics.

    Kibaki’s former lecturer at Makerere believed that if Kibaki stayed for long in academia as a lecturer, he would have ended up as the President of the World Bank.

    The late president Mwai Kibaki's report card from Mang'u High School in 1947.
    The late president Mwai Kibaki's report card from Mang'u High School in 1947.
    Courtesy

    After graduating with a First Class Honours degree in Makerere, Kibaki got a scholarship to study at a university of his own choice in the UK. He chose the prestigious London School of Economics which had distinguished itself as a centre of excellence. 

    It was here that Kibaki studied for a Bachelor of Science degree (BSc) in public finance graduating with a distinction in 1958. He became the first African to graduate from the school with a first-class honours degree.