Kenya is one of the East African nations with a fast-growing economy. Its colourful flag depicts the country’s diverse agriculture and history of independence. Just like other nations, Kenyans value their flag and this is the reason it has always been regarded as a symbol that unifies the 42 native tribes of Kenya. Despite facing political instability and tough economic times, the country has maintained its place at the top as one of the best tourist destinations in Africa. Popularly known as ‘Bendera’ in the local Swahili language, Kenya flag was first adopted on December 12, 1963.
The structure of the Kenya flag
Kenya flag features 3 parallel horizontal bands that are all equal in size and length. The black band is at the top followed by the red colour, and then the green colour at the bottom. In addition to this, the red band is sandwiched in white. Maasai shield covers crossed spears in the flag. The shield is imposed at the centre. Ideally, the Kenya flag has derived many similarities from the flag of the Kenya African National Union (K.A.N.U). It consists of black, red, green, and white colours. The following is an in-depth breakdown of the aforementioned colours and their respective meanings:
• Black: This colour symbolizes the black people who are the majority of Kenyan citizens. It was included due to the dominance of the British colonialists during the country’s struggle for independence.
• Red: The red colour in the Kenyan flag is a symbol of the blood that was shed during the fight for freedom. There was a lot of bloodshed and deaths as the Mau Mau uprising engaged the British soldiers in the war that finally led to the independence of the country from colonial rule.
• Green: The inclusion of green in the flag comes as a symbol of the green land of Kenya. Kenya is a country whose economy is largely based on agriculture. This colour clearly shows the country’s rich fertile land that forms the pillar of its agriculture.
• White: was added to the other colours to give meaning to peace and honesty. These two words have always been reflected everywhere including the national anthem of the country. Apart from these colours, the flag of Kenya also comprises of a traditional Maasai shield together with two spears. This symbol was included to show the country’s defence of all the factors symbolized by the colours.
• The Massia Shield and Two Spears: the traditional Masai shield and the two spears were included after Kenya got its independence. The shield and the two spears symbolize that all Kenyans are always ready to defend the independence they fought so hard for.
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Similarities with other flags
The flag of Kenya also shares many similarities with flags from other African nations. Same features are found on the Malawian flag and the Pan African flag. Furthermore, the recently born South Sudan has a flag that is almost identical with that of Kenya. The only difference is the inclusion of blue colour and a yellow star on the left side of South Sudan’s flag. These are some of the facts about the flag of Kenya. Indeed, it can plausibly be argued that the Kenya flag is one of the most attractive. Everything in it is of great symbolism and significance to the Kenyan people. From the weird to the most conventional, we’ve decided to bring you awesome designs of cool things that people have done with the Kenyan flag.
5 Awesome and Beautiful Kenya Flag Designs You Must See
Flickr Image – Kenya boy by bugiri
Kenya Flag Cake by Jenny Budzynski
Kenya Flag by jimdileva via Flickr
These are the many ways Kenyans have to depict the love and respect they have for the flag that represents the symbol of total freedom and unity.
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Not just the Kenya flag, the country’s national anthem is another symbol of unity which is available in the national language (Kiswahili) and of course, in the English Language. In any national or international events, singing the national anthem usually coincides with the raising of the Kenyan flag.