Former President Emilio Stanley Mwai Kibaki is not dead as highly rumoured.
The former President’s son Jimmy Kibaki has confirmed.
Emilio Stanley Mwai Kibaki, C.G.H. (born 15 November 1931) was the third President of Kenya, serving from December 2002 until April 2013.
He had previously served as the fourth Vice-President of Kenya for ten years from 1978 to 1988 under President Daniel arap Moi. He also held cabinet ministerial positions in the Kenyatta and Moi governments, including time as minister for Finance (1969–1981) under Kenyatta, and Minister for Home Affairs (1982–1988) and Minister for Health (1988–1991) under Moi.
Kibaki served as an opposition Member of Parliament from 1992 to 2002. He unsuccessfully vied for the presidency in 1992 and 1997. He served as the Leader of the Official Opposition in Parliament from 1998 to 2002. In the 2002 presidential election, he was elected as President of Kenya.
Kibaki was born in 1931 in Thunguri village, Othaya division of Kenya’s then Nyeri District, now Nyeri County. He is the youngest son of Kikuyu peasants Kibaki Gĩthĩnji and Teresia Wanjikũ. Though baptised as Emilio Stanley by Italian missionaries in his youth, he has been known as Mwai Kibaki throughout his public life.
Family oral history maintains that his early education was made possible by his much older brother-in-law, Paul Muruthi, who insisted that young Mwai should go to school instead of spending his days grazing his father’s sheep and cattle and baby-sitting his little nephews and nieces for his older sister. Kibaki turned out to be an exemplary student. He attended Gatuyainĩ School for the first two years, where he completed what was then called Sub “A” and sub “B” (the equivalent of standard one and two or first and second grade). He later joined Karima mission school for the three more classes of primary school.
He later moved to Mathari School (now Nyeri High School) between 1944 and 1946 for Standard four to six, where, in addition to his academic studies, he learnt carpentry and masonry as students would repair furniture and provide material for maintaining the school’s buildings. He also grew his own food as all students in the school were expected to do, and earned extra money during the school holidays by working as a conductor on buses operated by the defunct Othaya African Bus Union. After Karima Primary and Nyeri Boarding primary schools, he proceeded to Mang’u High School where he studied between 1947 and 1950.
In early 1960, Mwai Kibaki left academia for active politics by giving up his job at Makerere and returning to Kenya to become an executive officer of Kenya African National Union (KANU), at the request of Jaramogi Oginga Odinga (who went on to become Kenya’s first Vice President). Kibaki then helped to draft Kenya’s independence constitution.
In 1963, Kibaki was elected as Member of Parliament for Donholm Constituency (subsequently called Bahati and now known as Makadara) in Nairobi.
His election was the start of a long political career. In 1963 Kibaki was appointed the Permanent Secretary for the Treasury.
Appointed Assistant Minister of Finance and chairman of the Economic Planning Commission in 1963, he was promoted to Minister of Commerce and Industry in 1966. In 1969, he became Minister of Finance and Economic Planning where he served until 1982.