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Mpeketoni is located in Kenya
Location in Kenya
Coordinates: 02°23′20″S 40°25′19″E / 2.38889°S 40.42194°E / -2.38889; 40.42194
CountyLamu County
10 m (30 ft)
 (2015 Estimate)
 • Total50,000
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)

Mpeketoni is a town in Lamu County, on the Kenyan coast. It is a settlement scheme started in 1960s by the first president of the Republic of Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta near a fresh water lake bearing his name.[1]


Mpeketoni lies in Lamu County, 9 kilometres (6 mi),[2] south of the Garsen–Witu–Lamu Highway, approximately 45 kilometres (28 mi) southwest of Mokowe, on the coast.[3] The coordinates of the town are: 2°23'28.0"S, 40°41'50.0"E (Latitude:-2.391119; Longitude:40.697233).[4]


Originally, Mpeketoni and its surroundings were inhabited by Swahilis called Wabajuni and a small hunting and gathering tribe by the name of Wasanye or the Sanyes who are almost extinct. In the early 1970s Mpeketoni was transformed into a settlement area for landless Kenyans. Most of those who settled there were Kenyans from up country who had been living in Tanzania but decided to return home due to changing political climate. The Kikuyu tribe, which is traditionally a farming community, mostly populates this area. Other tribes found in Mpeketoni include the Luos and Kambas as well as the original local Swahili people.[1][5]

The town is on a route that was used by the Arab traders taking their commodities "slaves" to Lamu Island. Up to now huge mango trees along the way from Mpeketoni to Lamu Island are still visible and are said to have grown from the seeds of the mangoes slaves were eating.


The land has since been painstakingly transformed to arable land for farming. The main cash crops include maize, cotton, cassava, cashew nuts, mangoes, and bananas.

The people of Mpeketoni have benefited from the efforts from a variety of non-profit organizations, a German not-for-profit organization GTZ and a Dutch philanthropist with ongoing charity projects since 1987. Schools, a clinic and a church have been built with funds collected from the Netherlands in collaboration with the Groen van Prinsterer school in Vlaardingen, in the Netherlands. The clinic was named Maria Teresa Nuzzo Health Centre after the foundress of the Catholic Sisters', a congregation that run it. It is now the Mpeketoni Hospital.[6] Mpeketoni is host to Lake Kenyatta, a fresh-water lake that covers about 5 square kilometres (1,200 acres). The lake is an ecological site with variety of fish, not less than 3,500 hippos and a large array of birds.[7]


As of June 2015, the population of the town was estimated at about 50,000.[5]


The Division is divided into small administrative villages, including Kiongwe, Baharini, Mkunumbi, Bomani, Uziwa, Mapenya, Lakeside, Kibaoni, Hongwe and Tewa.

Mpeketoni attacks[edit]

On June 16, 2014, gunmen killed at least 48 people in a bloody attack.[8][9][10][11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Sanga, Benard (17 June 2014). "When 'mpe katoni' became Mpeketoni". The Standard (Kenya). Nairobi. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  2. ^ GFC (9 April 2016). "Distance between Mkunumbi, Lamu, Kenya and Mpeketoni, Lamu, Kenya". (GFC). Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  3. ^ GFC (9 April 2016). "Distance between Mpeketoni, Lamu, Kenya and Mokowe, Lamu, Kenya". (GFC). Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  4. ^ Google. "Location of Mpeketoni, Lamu County, Kenya" (Map). Google Maps. Google.
  5. ^ a b Kayomani (9 April 2016). "Bajuni Modern History: Mpeketoni - The History of the Settlement". Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  6. ^ Praxides, Cheti (14 April 2015). "Sh50 million morgue for Mpeketoni Hospital". The Star (Kenya). Nairobi. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  7. ^ "Kenya: Lake Kenyatta in Mpeketoni Is Dying, Experts Warn". The Star (Kenya) via Nairobi. 9 January 2015. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  8. ^ Associated Press (16 June 2014). "Police: 48 killed in terror attack on Kenya town". USA Today Quoting Associated Press. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  9. ^ BBC News (16 June 2016). "Kenya attack: Mpeketoni near Lamu hit by al-Shabab raid". BBC News. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  10. ^ Smith, David (16 June 2014). "Kenya attack: Gunmen kill at least 48 people". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  11. ^ "Mpeketoni attack: Death toll rises to 48". Daily Nation Quoting Associated Press. Nairobi. 16 June 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2016.

External links[edit]