On the 12th of this month (December) Kenya celebrates 50 years of independence. These have been 50 mostly dramatic, sometimes traumatic and largely successful years. Its culture, which has evolved from its Arab, Indian, English and local ethnic heritages, has made Kenya one of the most cosmopolitan nations in Africa. Kenya is the financial and commercial hub of the East African region. The port at Mombasa is a vital trade lifeline to its landlocked neighbours such as Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi and eastern DRC. Kenya has remained democratic since its independence and enjoys one of the freest and most vigorous presses on the continent. It has also become a major innovation hub, particularly in IT; the now famous mobile money transfer system was pioneered here.
Kenya has embarked on the Vision 2030, a comprehensive plan to completely transform its economy and attain middle-income status by that date. Given the healthy growth pattern so far and the governance reforms in its new constitution, it seems more than likely that it will attain its objectives. On to the next great 50 years!