Before working to gain Kenyan Independence, Pinto first fought on behalf of the Goa People in India in the 1940’s. Upon returning to Kenya, in 1949, it was not long before he became involved in the fight against British Colonial Rule. For this he was arrested and would spend four years in prison. Upon his release in 1959, Gama began his renewed push to educate & organize the Kenyan People to fight for independence. In 1960 he founded the Kenyan African National Union Newspaper, was elected to the legislature (among other positions), armed Mau Mau soldiers, and formed alliances with others in the movement. Pinto was a member of The Mau Mau Central Committee, and worked to free Mau Mau Leader (and eventual Kenyan President) Jomo Kenyatta from prison. Sadly, it would be Jomo Kenyatta’s Regime (backed by American and British Interests) that would turn on Pio Gama Pinto and allegedly conspire to have him assassinated.
Pio Gama Pinto was assassinated three days after Malcom X (El Hajj Malik El Shabazz); and 53 years later, his true assassin has never been prosecuted for his murder. Like Malcolm, his crime was pushing for social, political, and economic equality by any means necessary. And like Brother Malcolm, he spoke truth to power-even if it was against one of his own partners in the struggle. Kisilu Mutua was convicted and received the death penalty for Pinto’s murder in 1965. However, after 35 years in jail, Mutua was released and would later receive compensation after it was determined that he had been tortured into making a confession.