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VIDEO: President Kenyatta tells of Bob Collymore’s last wish, talks about the Whiskey Jeff Koinange and co drank

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President Uhuru Kenyatta yesterday gave a moving recollection of how Bob Collymore broke news of his failing health to him.

The President, who led mourners in eulogising Collymore during a memorial service at All Saints Cathedral two days after his cremation, recalled a conversation he had with the Safaricom boss three weeks ago while on a trip to Canada.

Collymore had called him consistently at 2am for two days in a row. On the second day, President Kenyatta received the call.

“I picked it and asked him, ‘why are you calling me at 2am’?” Uhuru said.

He narrated how a nervous Collymore replied that he had not realised the President was travelling.

Uhuru asked him to call when he flew back into the country.

Collymore, however, was adamant.

“I have something quite urgent I would like to discuss with you,” Collymore said. “The promise I made you, that I will hang on for another year at Safaricom, I think I am going to break it.”

 

“Why?” Uhuru prodded.

“We will talk about it when you get back.”

The President was left wondering what might have happened, yet Collymore had another request: “Please don’t tell anyone about what I have just said. We will talk when you get back.”

READ ALSO:   Collymore to leave office as row erupts over successor

When Uhuru returned, he went to see Collymore at his house. They exchanged pleasantries and revisited their earlier conversation.

“Everything is fine but like I said, I am gonna break that promise,” Uhuru recalled Collymore saying with a smile.

Oblivious of the weight of those words, so well-wrapped in mirth, Uhuru said he begun teasing Collymore that maybe, Wambui, Collymore’s wife, was the reason why he wanted to quit.

The President’s revelation had the mourners in laughter.

“I asked ‘Ah, Wambui has put you under pressure?’ He answered no,” Uhuru recalled.

That is when Collymore broke the bad news: “I don’t think I have more than a couple of weeks to go.”

Uhuru said he was momentarily speechless and then told Collymore, “You know there are still a lot of things we can try and do.”

“No, I have given up. I have tried everything … and I have accepted that my time has come,” Collymore replied.

The President said they spent the whole afternoon together.

Health concern

Uhuru asked Collymore why he was talking about Safaricom while the big concern should have been his health.

Collymore responded: “My chapter is closed and I have accepted my fate. So what I want to know is what the future of this company is. What’s going to happen?”

READ ALSO:   Safaricom’s plan to name new CEO dashed by Collymore’s sudden death

The two friends spent time talking about what Collymore’s vision for Safaricom was. They also discussed what Uhuru’s legacy should be.

Coast based artist Zuber Bakhrani puts final touches to a portrait of Bob Collymore.

When the President was leaving, he asked Collymore if there was anything he could do for him.

“Just take care of Wambui and the kids. That’s all I want. I am not interested in anything else.”

Uhuru cracked up mourners when he revealed that a ‘special reserve’ aged whiskey that Collymore shared with his friends, among them Peter Kenneth and Kenya Commercial Bank CEO Joshua Oigara a week before he died, was actually reserved for him.

“So Peter Kenneth, Oigara and crew you have to pay. That didn’t belong to you,” he jokingly said.

Uhuru said the country has lost a true champion; a man who had a passion for the youth and the arts; a person who lived not only in service to himself and his family, but also to society.

He said Collymore’s contribution to the country, in only the 10 years he was around, was greater than most who have lived in Kenya all their lives.

“I am certain Bob loved Kenya. He loved it like his own country, and Bob loved his wife and children dearly. We have lost a friend; we have lost a part of our soul,” said Uhuru.

READ ALSO:   ‘He was disappointed in me,’ BBC reporter Larry Madowo shares his intimate conversation with the late Bob Collymore

Collymore’s wife, Wambui Kamiru, gave her tribute by reading a speech Collymore gave to a group of children in 2013 titled ‘A person is a person, no matter how small’.

She said one is never too small to make a difference in this world.

“Never be ashamed of who you are. Never apologise for what you have. Never let people decide how you should feel about yourself. Be proud of yourselves and your achievements. Speak out and be considerate to those around you because a person is a person, no matter how small,” Wambui said.

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Collymore was a great human and a wonderful example for all.

Deputy President William Ruto said Collymore behaved and interacted as though he was going to live forever. This, he said, demonstrated his courage.

Safaricom chairman Nicholas Ng’ang’a said Collymore always fought for people to get a fair deal, whether it was for short-term gains like salaries and bonuses, or for long-term projects.

Mr Ng’ang’a remembered that it was Collymore’s idea to let people transact on M-Pesa for amounts as low as Sh100.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. David mbugua

    July 6, 2019 at 4:12 am

    I really want to say that I am really touch by the passing away of Bob Collymore. May I suggest that we get one street named after him. He really transformed our lives. And with a street named after him; we shall remember him for generations.

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Entertainment

This is the new life of former TPF hottie Esther Nabaasa

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Her breakthrough was when she was signed by UG Records and during that time, being signed to a record label was a big plus for an artiste.

Esther Nabaasa had just won the second edition of the Tusker Project Fame (TPF). She was highly believed to be the next big thing after Juliana and Iryn Namubiru.

“I want my music to hit the international scene. I want to be marketable all over the world,” were her words soon after returning from Kenya where she had participated in the competition along with 18 other contestants.

But that did not happen. Nabaasa’s singing career lasted as long as her one-year record deal with Universal Music Group in South Africa.

QUIT MUSIC

There were stories that she had quit music after just a few songs such as Sing From the Nile, Yoga Yoga and Watwala Omutima Gwange.

Word then was that she was going to concentrate on her marriage to producer Michael Fingers. The couple have two children now and Nabaasa never completely quit music.

She settled for songwriting and she wrote some of the songs on Bebe Cool’s Go Mama album that was released in 2014 as well as Juliana’s Bits and Pieces.

Besides that, she also does music for commercials and last we heard is that she hit a jackpot writing one of the songs in Natasha Museveni Karugire’s 27 Gunsmovie.

READ ALSO:   DID YOU KNOW? Safaricom's Bob Collymore has no University degree but still turned out fine

By nairobinews

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Entertainment

Laura Walubengo: Leaving Capital FM after 12 years was so scaring

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Former Capital FM presenter Laura Walubengo is almost stepping into the fourth floor.

Walubengo recently took to social media to look back at her career before she turns 40 years saying that leaving Capital was one of the scariest moves she has ever taken.

“Moving from Capital to DStv was such a life changer for me. I grew so much and so quickly. My outlook, my ideas, my thought process, my dreams, the possibilities; everything just grew. It was so scary leaving Capital FM after 12.5yrs, and it wasn’t an active move but rather a door opening and I couldn’t peep – I was either in or out. Can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds. Even today! 6 days to 39” shared  Walubengo.

Movement

Walubengo left Capital in 2014 for South African firm MultiChoice as the Lead Digital Communications Specialist East Africa for DStv based in Kenya before she returned to Capital in 2017.

She left yet again in 2018, only after 7 months Laura called it quits again this time to join China Global Television Network (CGTN).

By Ghafla

READ ALSO:   Safaricom’s plan to name new CEO dashed by Collymore’s sudden death
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Entertainment

PHOTOS: Former Machachari actor, Almasi, graduates from UK University

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The elated former Machachari actor took to social media to celebrate his milestone with a series of pictures and videos with his Instafam joining in to congratulate him.

“I just wanted to say, thank you, thank you, and thank you a hundred and eight times to every single person who has you know, congratulated me for this endeavor. It’s been a group milestone; I didn’t do this by myself.

Congratulations Almasi (Photo: Instagram)

“This came as a result of everyone being around me, giving me positive vibes and positive energy. And the ones spreading positive energy are showing us that they will always be there for regardless.

“And that we need to toughen up and just move on and be keep strong,” he said.

Of course what better way to celebrate than with family?

Family (Photo: Instagram)

Almasi’s family members came through for him and witnessed the actor receive his certificate with pride written all over their faces.

BY SDE

READ ALSO:   Safaricom’s plan to name new CEO dashed by Collymore’s sudden death
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