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The origins and development of the AIPCA are closely linked up with the nationalist movements that flourished among the Gikuyu especially from 1921. These developments were part of the wider political reaction among the people of Kenya which was in response to the intensification of various colonialist vexations especially between 1915 and 1921. Similar manifestations were taking place in Western Kenya, as is evidenced by the formation of the Kavirondo Tax Payers’ Welfare Association, and later, in the 1940s, that of the Young Buu Association in the Tana River district (cf Okaro- Kojwang and Bonaya in Mclncosh 1969, respectively 113-116 and 163-164).

AIPCA and the Kikuyu Nationalist Movements

In the Gikuyu case forced labour, both for men and women, seems to have served as a precipitating factor. Although missionaries had suggested representing the natives in the legislative council in dealing with their complaints, the Africans decided to take matters in their own hands. As Bennett (1973, 129) records: “Two bodies were formed: The Kikuyu Association in 1920 and the Young Kikuyu Association in 1921”. This latter was renamed the Kikuyu Central Association (KCA) in 1925, when its members, in a bid to camouflage the Association’s political nationalism, decided to form an independent church which actually functioned as the religious arm of the Kikuyu Independent Schools Association (KlSA). Although David Kiragu Maina of Fort Hall (Murang’a) had already founded a first independent church among the Kikuyu in 1921, the origin of the AIPCA is usually reckoned to be in 1925 (Barrett et al. 1973, 129).

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