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Daniel Toroitich arap Moi

Moi, Daniel Toroitich arap (môy) [key], 1924–, president of Kenya (1978–2002). First named to the legislature in 1955, he opposed Kikuyu and Luo dominance until he joined Kenya's first independent government (1963) and the majority party, the Kenya African National Union (KANU). Moi became vice president in 1967 and he succeeded Jomo Kenyatta as Kenya's and KANU's president in 1978 after Kenyatta's death. He was initially popular, winning over the Kikuyu and freeing political prisoners. He established a one-party state in 1982, but repression and subsequent protests in the late 1980s led the United States to withhold aid. Moi restored a multiparty system in late 1991 and was reelected in 1992 and 1997, but his government continued to be accused of human-rights violations and corruption. After retiring as Kenyan president in 2002 he continued to head KANU until early 2005.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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