The family of one of Kenya’s best-known anti-colonial fighters, Dedan Kimathi, has asked the government to resume the search for his body. His widow made the request to the Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission, saying she wants to give him a proper burial.
Kimathi, a leader of the 1950s Mau Mau uprising against British colonial rule, was executed in 1957. He was buried in an unmarked grave, reportedly in Nairobi’s Kamiti prison.
When it came to power in 2003, President Mwai Kibaki’s government promised to make the matter a priority. Several attempts were made to identify the spot where the body was buried but in vain. A number of people who claimed to have witnessed the burial led officials to spots within Kamiti Maximum Prison but they found nothing.
Instead, the government built a monument in central Nairobi in honour of the Mau Mau fighter. The BBC’s Josphat Makori in Nairobi says the Mau Mau movement did not have a single leader but Kimathi was the most celebrated freedom fighter.