Seth Mwaniki @PeopleDailyKe
The 92nd Kenya National Music Festival kicked off yesterday in Nyeri county with at least 600 genres of music expected to be performed before the end of the 10-day event.
The festival at Dedan Kimathi University of Science and Technology kicked off with performances by Early Childhood Development Education pupils and children with special needs.
The performances will be taking place inside the 12 halls at the university to accommodate the 120,000 learners drawn from all levels of learning institutions.
Speaking during a brief opening ceremony, the festival’s national chairman Peter Wanjohi said they are optimistic that the event will live up to its goals of national unity, cohesion and integration.
He said this year’s festival will bring on board learners from Uganda and South Sudan.
He said the previous festivals had been held in 12 different areas outside Nairobi and it has been taken to Nyeri for the first time given that the county previously lacked the capacity in terms of a facility to hold such a big event.
“We are happy now that Nyeri county has the necessary capacity to hold this event, we want our learners to have different experiences by visiting various parts of the country,” he said.
In addition, he said that all necessary arrangements have been made as to where the learners will be accommodated citing 39 different schools in 20 kilometres radius from the university as well as on meals that will be carefully prepared for safety reasons.
Central Region Commissioner Wilson Njega said security has been enhanced saying that all measures have been put in place to ensure that the festival runs smoothly.
Njega, however, said teachers will be held responsible if anything happens to the learners given that they will be directly dealing with them in all areas of their daily operations.
Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga said that the county administration will offer any support required to make the festival a success.
Opening the stage were ECD pupils from Saint Peters, Mumias, Umoja Day, Nairobi and Rozaline Academy, Githunguri who captivated the audience with their traditional performances.
Rozaline Academy tore the silence in the hall following a thunderous applause after presenting their Kikuyu traditional dance whose magnificence was radiated by accompanying props that depicted Kikuyu traditional set up including huts, Calabashes, baskets, winnowers and farming tools.