Mzee Ali Mazrui

Filed Under: Eulogies

Date Created:14 Oct 2014

Last Modified:14 Oct 2014

Number of Views: 445

Written By: Kampa Senkwe

About Kampa

I am just an urban Zambian guy with a quizzical mind.

THE passing of renowned Pan-Africanist, scholar and teacher, Dr Ali Alamin Mazrui is a great loss not only to the people of Kenya, but Africa as a continent if not the whole world at large.

I was only 11 when I got introduced to the works of this towering intellectual and one of Africa's illustrious sons.

Back in the day, ZNBC Tv used to air educational and fascinating documentaries like, In Search of..., Secrets & Mysteries, Nature Watch among others.

It was, however, the nine-part documentary Prof Mazrui wrote and narrated, The Africans: A Triple Heritage, that made me develop an early interest in intellectually stimulating tv shows and love for political science.

The series, and the book on which it is based, reveals and analyzes the complex ways in which African communities exhibit a blend of three cultures: indigenous, Muslim and Western.

I remember as a young boy being glued to our 1991 vintage Elektor 14 inch black and white television set every time The Africans was aired. I learnt quite much about African history and politics in general by just listening to his documentaries.

To this day, The Africans, both the documentary and books are still an amazing timeless collection.

A wiseman once said, "The death of an old man is like a burning library." The death of Dr Mazrui, 81, who at the time of his demise was a professor at Binghamton University in New York can be described in such a manner.

Africa has lost a great scholar and historian in Dr Mazrui. He was an African encyclopedia and a great custodian of African heritage.

Dr Mazrui not only advanced the continent's social-economic, political, religious, cultural & ethnic well being & identity but its unique diversity too.

His indelible signature on the African continent will never be forgotten in its memoirs.

Rest in peace Mzee Mazrui. Yours is a life's race well run

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