Kenya Area and Population

By | February 16, 2022

Area and population. – The colony of Kenya, with the small coastal stretch having the status of protectorate, has 582,579 km surface area (5645 are of the protectorate), and is currently divided into 6 provinces, plus the autonomous district of the capital, Nairobi, which is in the Central Province. For customs purposes, Kenya has been united with Uganda and Tanganyika since 1949. The population, from 3,106,000 residents in the 1931 census it had increased to 5,405,966 residents in the 1948 census and was evaluated in 1958 at 6,351,000 residents, of whom 6,080,000 are Africans (and of these more than 1 million belong to the well-known Kikuyu people). In 1958, 64,700 Europeans, 165,000 Indians, Pakistanis and Goans, 35,000 Arabs and 5700 residents were calculated as residing in the territory of Kenya. of other non-African origins. The capital, Nairobi, had 221,700 residents at the end of December 1957, of whom 22,000 were Europeans and 84,500 Asian. Other important centers are: Mombasa (98,000 residents in 1954).

Economic conditions. – European agriculture, in constant expansion, essentially produces coffee (212,000 q harvests and 217,720 exported in 1957), maize (grown, on average, over 400,000 ha, with production ranging between 5 and 6 million q), wheat (1,040.000 q in 1957, compared to 635.000 q in 1943-44 and 200.000 q in the pre-war period), tea (12.000 ha and 100.000 q in 1957), cotton (33.000 ha, 20.000 q of fiber and 40.000 q of seeds in 1957), sugar cane (230,000 q of sugar in 1957), and pyrethrum (26,800 q in 1955; in 1957 17,300 q of flowers and 770 q of extract were exported). Add agave sisalana (110,000 ha and 400,000 q of fiber in 1956; 396,000 q of fiber were exported in 1957), pineapples, etc. Also important is the production of tanning extract obtained from mimosa (263,000 q exported in 1957). Forests occupy only 1,265. 000 ha (2.2% of the land area) and have little importance for the economy. The livestock herd varied considerably between 1938 and 1957: from 4.5 million cattle to 7 million; from 3.5 million sheep to 2.4; from 4.5 million goats to 3.9; it is largely indigenous farming. The mining production in 1957 was: carbonate of soda, about 120,000 t; salt, about 23,000 tons; diatomite, 4300 t; graphite, about 960 tons; gold, 230 kg. Add kaolin, asbestos, pumice, etc. The processing industries are few: cement (205,000 t in 1957), beer (390,000 hl in 1987), tobacco and some others. Low electricity production, 2/3 of thermal origin: in 1957, 268 million kWh. Foreign trade, excluding exchanges with Uganda and Tanganyika, went from £ 51,718,000, for imports, and 19,521,000 for exports, in 1953, to 72,003,000 and 26,362,000 respectively, in 1957. Exports are mainly directed towards: Great Britain (25.5%), Federal Republic of Germany (22 , 6%), United States (9.7%), India (6.8%); imports come mainly from: Great Britain (38.2%), India (6.4%), Federal Republic of Germany (6.2%). These percentages refer to the figures for the year 1957.

Communications. – There are about 2100 km of railway lines, 39.000 km of rolling stock, of which less than 750 with bituminous surface. Main port is always Mombasa; main airports are those of Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.

History. – The events of the Second World War, favorable to an awareness, in the colonial peoples, of their rights and their own strength with respect to the colonizing state, also created in Kenya, as in the rest of the colonial world, a situation that was entirely nationalistic, which manifested itself in the formation of political and trade union associations, such as the Kenya African Union, the African Trade Union, or tribal-based associations, such as the Kikuyu Central Association. The common program of the various indigenous movements, based above all on the redistribution of land with the abolition of European reserves, and on political autonomy, found the most radical exponent in the Mau Mau sect. These, after intense organizational and propaganda action, went down in 1952 in open rebellion. For more than three years the terrorist action by the rebels and the harsh repressive action of British forces developed in very harsh forms. Since 1954, however, the British government was concerned, in addition to restoring order, to address the causes that had led to the rebellion, both by revising the agricultural legislation in favor of the indigenous, and by initiating constitutional reforms that would allow the indigenous to participate. to the government of their country. The reforms resulted in the Constitution of April 15, 1958, based on a Legislative Council, an Executive Council and a Council of State, with proportionate representation of Europeans, Africans and Asians. However, Africans, including Tom Mboya, opposed the administration’s “multi-racial” approach.

Kenya Area and Population