A naturalist and a rebel of sorts. These are some of the words that can be used to describe George Adamson. An adventurer and an author were some of the qualities that George Adamson possessed. Born in India in 1906, he was fondly called “Baba ya Simba” which is swahili for Father of lions. The Adamsons, as they are remembered, were great lovers of nature who devoted their lives to conservation efforts.
Julie Ward; a British publishing assistant who was also a passionate wildlife photographer was murdered in September 1988, while on a safari at the Maasai Mara game reserve in Kenya. At only 28 years of age then, her burnt and mutilated body was found a week after she went missing. Twenty-two years later, it has been a case of justice not only delayed, but denied as her killers are yet to be apprehended. The original theory fronted by the then Kenyan officials investigating the murder, suggested that she had been a victim of a lion attack and then later struck by lightning.
Author, conservationist, and expert in animal husbandry, Kenya born Daphne Sheldrick is a recognized international authority on wild animal rearing. Co-warden of Kenya’s Tsavo National Park with her late husband, David Sheldrick, for 30 years she raised animal orphans before rehabilitating them back into the wild. Today, she heads The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, a center dedicated to the protection and preservation of elephants, Black Rhinos, and other endangered African species. Born on June 4th, 1934, Daphne grew up among wild and domestic animals. Educated at Nakuru Primary School and then Kenya High School, she graduated in 1950 with Honors, achieving the position of 8th in the colony. With the possibility of a bursary for university entrance in the Cambridge School Leaving Certificate, Daphne opted to marry instead. Living within the National Park with her husband, she observed and studied animals in both wild and captive environments.
Known colloquially as The Lunatic Express, the Uganda Railways is a historical railway network linking the interiors of Uganda to her East African neighbours, Kenya to the Indian Ocean at port city of Mombasa in Kenya. Built by the British Government under the supervision of chief engineer George Whitehouse at the start of the period when Britain maintained colonial control of the region as British East Africa, Whitehouse wanted to put to an end to the era of donkeys, sluggish carts, walks, and other ineffective modes of transport that caused delays but were relatively common to many East Africans.
Mention Somalia to anyone who has known, or in the least heard about the Horn of African nation since the days of military dictator Mohamed Siad Barre to this 21st Century, and you can be rest assured a good percentage will recognize the country as one of those drought-ravaged, war-infested and poverty-stricken Sub-Saharan nations. And rightfully so.
Following the downfall of President Siad Barre in 1991, a civil war broke out in Somalia between the faction supporting Interim President Ali Mahdi Mohamed and that supporting General Mohamed Farah Aidid. The United Nations, in cooperation with the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and other organizations, sought to resolve the conflict.
Located a mere twenty miles off the coast of East Africa, the tropical Island of Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous part of mainland Republic of Tanzania. It comprises of an archipelago of many small islands, besides the two main ones, Pemba and Unguja, and was once a separate state with a long trading history within the Arab world. Known mostly for its sweet-smelling cloves and its historic center, Stone Town (a World Heritage Site), Zanzibar united with Tanganyika to from Tanzania in 1964 and still enjoys a high degree of autonomy within the union. As a semi-autonomous part of Tanzania, the “Spice Islands” has its own government known as the revolutionary government of Zanzibar.
History largely remembers Jean Bedel Bokassa, cum Emperor Bokassa I not only for his flamboyance and career as a soldier but also for his excesses as an autocratic ruler of the Central African Republic form 1966-1979. Born in Bobangui in 1921, Bokassa was an orphan by the age of six, his mother having committed suicide a week after his father was murdered, leaving him to be brought up by missionaries.
The 1984-85 Ethiopian famine, one of Africa’s biggest disasters in history, was characterized by the cruelest act of nature, war and catapulted by the sheer negligence and avaricious nature of the human race. At first, cattle suffered as they grew thinner, thirstier and hungrier before they eventually died as worthless bags of skeletons. Then the crops; no longer able to withstand the searing heat, withered.
Naïve and likable, shrewd and ruthless, hulking and egotistic, intimidating and outrageous. These are just but the fewest of words which can be used to describe General Idi Amin Dada Oumee, commonly known as Idi Amin. His was the fairy tale of a dog seared by a lion as he vehemently took power in a coup from the man who he had served under, General Milton Obote, the then President of Uganda.
He struggled for more than half a century to illuminate his beloved country and free its people from the British colonial rule, a course for which he was vilified and also pushed him behind bars. Born at Ngenda in the Gatundu Division of Kiambu in Central Kenya, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta alias Taa ya Kenya, Swahili for the 'Light of Kenya' was the man who brought the light of independence to the East African nation.