Exclusive: Machachari’s Baha reveals how gambling addiction affected his life
Child prodigy actor Tyler Kamau Mbaya, popularly known as Baha in the long running show, Machachari, was recently exposed online for being a gambling addict who “scammed” people for money to bet.
It all became public knowledge after a Kenyan woman living in the US, widely known as Nurse Judy, published screenshots of Baha begging her for money to solve some life problems he was going through.
Nurse Judy sent him some money despite not having met before, only for Baha to come back with more emergencies and requests for more money.
According to Nurse Judy, Baha became a nag, always calling and messaging her and she found his behavior suspicious. It was then that she reached out to Baha’s longtime girlfriend, Georgina Njenga, to find out the extent of their home problems only to be told that there were no such problems in their home.
Georgina also said she had been the one taking care of their bills and revealed that Baha was having gambling addiction and it was probably why he had been begging for money.
Following this conversation with Georgina, Nurse Judy went ahead to publish screenshots of these conversations, exposing 23-year-old Baha for being a gambling addict and an alleged scammer who also refused to pay back the monies he’d borrowed.
The screenshots went viral and a national conversation ensued on how Baha was too young to develop such an addiction and how young people go to extreme lengths to obtain money to maintain unsustainable lifestyles. He went on to confess that everything Nurse Judy released on her social media platforms regarding their conversations was true and that it had caused him great humiliation.
Nairobi News caught up with Baha on Friday, June 8, 2023, for a candid conversation where he revealed how gambling affected his life.
“I’m an actor by profession, I’m a young dad and I’ve been struggling with the underlying issue (gambling) for a while and I’m willing to seek help. I found myself deep into gambling because of a series of bad decisions that piled up to a point where I feel that my finances were crippled so I was trying to get fast money – which was pretty much gambling,” Baha said.
“The finances were not necessarily for bills because my shawrry (girlfriend) was helping out, so majority of it was now the elevation of getting from one place to the other – because of the pressure of society’s expectations. If it was basic needs, that was all sorted out. I was also managing on my own because basic needs were not things I was unable to hack. It was the luxuries in life that I was lacking and I was under pressure to search for them,” he explained.
Amidst all this drama, it was discovered that he and Georgina were at odds after they unfollowed each other on social media. During the interview, Baha would not speak on how Georgina has been coping with all this negative attention focused on them and asked that we focus on him and not her.
“When I went into betting, I started cutting off friends. I wasn’t so social so I’m trying to get social again so that it can prevent me from being alone, always being on my phone and finding myself betting,” he said.