One of the few remaining Kenya independence fighters has died.
Jonah M’Ituruchiu M’Itunga, commonly known as General Gachienja, passed away on Saturday at the age of 107. General Gachienja served as the assistant to Field Marshal Baimungi Marete, who took over from the revolutionary Mau Mau leader Dedan Kimathi.
He died while receiving treatment at the Isiolo General Hospital. General Gachienja’s daughter, Lucy Kinya, said he had been sick since April.
“We rushed our father to hospital on Saturday but he passed on at around 11 am as he was being treated. He had had difficulties eating since he was discharged in April. Doctors had not diagnosed him by the time he died,” she said.
She added, “We urge the government to support the family with burial plans so that we can give the general a befitting send-off. He did a lot for this country.”
Mau Mau War Veterans Association chairman Marete Kibuuru eulogised the Mau Mau fighter as a humble and brave man who survived despite the scars of the struggle for independence.
The father of seven fought alongside Generals including Ruku, Ndege, Kagia, Kula-Twende, Mukarange and Mengo, from Abothuguchi in Imenti Central.
He was among the fighters who laid down arms at Kinoru Stadium on December 27, 1963, led by Field Marshal Baimungi.
After independence, he ventured into farming.
General Gachienja was born in Kithirune, Imenti Central, but had been living in his farm at Ntumburi in Buuri Sub-county, Meru, where he was allocated land after independence.