Kenya: Recent history and current developments

This Brief Report deals with the attempted coup and recent developments in Kenya. It provides background and statistics, and information on the political background, economic developments, and foreign policy. Political unrest was expected following Jomo Kenyatta’s death in 1978, but transition of power to Vice President Daniel arop Moi went without incident. In 1979, elections were held where Moi was the sole candidate in the presidential election, and the assembly elections produced conflicting results which have come to affect recent developments. Economically, Kenya has experienced serious economic setbacks. The economy was also affected by a severe drought, which caused a decline in agriculture. Kenya is located in one of the most troubled regions of the world. However, relations with Somalia have improved due to intervention from Saudi Arabia and US. Relations remain strained between Kenya and Tanzania. To assess the situation, President Moi inherited a corrupt regime and took office during an economic recession. These pressures created a situation which came to a head in the form of the attempted coup d’etat. It is unclear who led the rebel forces in the abortive coup, but it will create further economic hardships and may further increase Kenya’s economic and military dependence on the US.