, also known as Galole
is a small town in Kenya
on the Tana River
with a population of 6932. Hola is the capital of the Tana River District
, in the Coast Province
. It is a busy market town, and portal to Ijara District and Northeastern province by local canoe ferry across the Tana River. In addition to the Hola agricultural irrigation scheme, there is a District Hospital and a Kenya Prisons facility located within the town.
Hola was the site of a detention camp Hola massacre
in 1959, where a fracas occurred in which eleven detainees were killed by African prison warders. The victims were alleged Mau Mau
rebels being held in the camp as part of Operation Anvil
. Since the incident there have been efforts to rename the town Galole.
What follows is a recent commentary by a contemporary witness to the Hola investigations:<blockquote>I, G J Wright, as an Inspector of Police, was sent to Hola a few days after the deaths occurred to relieve the incumbent who was sick. These detainees were not "alleged Mau Mau rebels" but hardcore and recalcitrant criminals who flatly refused to work on an experimental agricultural scheme. The warders, none of who were carrying machine guns, were instructed, perhaps misguidedly, to put the detainees through the motions of work. Some of the detainees attacked the warders with picks and shovels and... Read More