Google has published a special Doodle on its homepage to honor and celebrate Mekatilili wa Menza, one of Kenya’s first freedom fighters.
She is known for inspiring the Giriama people to resist colonial rule in the early 20th century.
At the Kenyan coast, the resilient legacy of Menza is commemorated during the festivities of the traditional Malindi Cultural Festival, an annual celebration of local history and pride. However, the celebrations may not take place this year due to COVID-19 restrictions.
She is also remembered for the Mepoho’s prophecy which was about the coming of strange people who had hair like sisal fibres and moved in flying vessels as well.
We are celebrating Mekatilili wa Menza, known for inspiring the Giriama people to resist colonial rule, one of Kenya’s first freedom fighters, circa 1900. Here she’s performing 'kifudu' to draw the crowds… ‘Shangwe’ #Shujaa #Mekatilili pic.twitter.com/Iex5SzrvAY
— Google in Africa (@googleafrica) August 8, 2020
Google began honoring people, events, anniversaries, and holidays with Doodles designed by one of its engineers in 1999. The company has since then honored an array of African personalities.
“Doodles provide a way for Google to connect with its users by helping them celebrate important moments and national heroes,” states Dorothy Ooko, Head of Communications and Public Affairs, Africa.
“Today, we honor Mekatilili wa Menza, the Giriama Wonder Woman who had a heart that was full of passion. Passion for freedom. Freedom against the oppressors of her people. We remember that her resistance quest led to her imprisonment in a far land in western Kenya and that she had to walk 965 kilometers to get back to her land after escaping from the prison.”