For many Kenyans who came of age before Kenya’s independence, the name Mama Ngina evokes memories of the struggle for self-rule. Indeed her documented contribution in dismantling the yokes of colonial debauchery has seen her recognized as a living legend and heroine of Kenya’s independence narrative. Her Excellency Mama Ngina Kenyatta became the nation’s founding First Lady upon independence and continued to build on the gains already consolidated.
Whether in agriculture or education, Mama Ngina Kenyatta would prove to be an astute entrepreneur whose initiatives and ventures have provided thousands of jobs to deserving Kenyans. She has equally mentored many Africans to be established business owners.
Coupled with her desire to see a united, peaceful and prosperous Kenya, the First Lady has undertaken a number charity activities hinged on socio-economic empowerment and promotion of human dignity.
This demonstrated leadership and entrepreneurial acumen guided Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to confer an honorary degree of Doctor of Science in Entrepreneurship (Honoris Causa) on Mama Ngina Kenyatta, Friday July 31st, 2015.
Mama Ngina was among over 4000 graduands who were awarded diplomas and conferred with degrees during JKUAT’s 25th graduation ceremony presided over by the Chancellor, Prof. Geoffrey Ole Maloiy.
Conferring the degree, Prof. Maloiy hailed Mama Ngina’s contribution to Kenya’s wellbeing which he averred hoists the First Lady as an excellent role model to Africa’s youth.
“Your immense success in the business sector should also serve as a challenge to the graduands we have before us in developing themselves to become not only job seekers but also successful job creators and entrepreneurs,” said Maloiy.
Vice Chancellor Prof. Mabel Imbuga characterised Mama Ngina as an exemplary figurehead whose passion for women empowerment continue to shape lives of thousands of Kenyans.
Accepting the award, Her Excellency Dr. Mama Ngina Kenyatta thanked JKUAT for the honour and challenged parents to educate their children saying it was the only way the country can insure its future.
Dr. Ngina challenged fellow graduands to use earned knowledge and make meaningful contribution to Kenya’s socio-economic advancement.
The First Lady becomes the third woman to be recognized and honoured by JKUAT. In 2007, the university conferred an Honorary Degree in Urban Design to then Executive Director of UN-HABITAT, Dr. Anna Tibaijuka. In November 2014, African Union Commission Chairperson, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma was awarded honorary degree of Doctor of Science in Public Health.