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Exclusive: Politicians used and dumped me! – Atommy Sifa

Luo Benga artist Tom Mboya Angaga, popularly known as Atommy Sifa, is no stranger to controversy.

In 2017, he composed a song praising former president Uhuru Kenyatta.

But the song almost got him killed, as it was produced and released when the campaign season had just started and he was perceived as someone who was against a certain political dispensation.

The song, titled Uhuru Nyale (Uhuru is capable), indirectly accused Raila Odinga, the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition party leader, of being behind the Luo community’s problems.

In one of the verses, he questioned why Luos supported what he called “that man” (referring to Mr Odinga).

“Joluo ugaloru mojoga ubiro luwo ng’ani nyaka kar ang’o (Luos, you shouldn’t be wasted. How long will you follow this person)?” the lyrics

Sifa was condemned by Mr Odinga’s supporters, who accused him of being used to undermine the ODM leader.

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He received life-threatening messages that sent him into exile in Tanzania until political temperatures cooled.

But his comeback after the dust settled did not solve his problems.

Today, Sifa is struggling to survive.

He has defended himself against accusations that he used a song to insult Mr Odinga.

He told Nairobi News that no one has ever proved to him that he sang ill of the former Prime Minister.

“I did not mention any name. It is therefore unfair for me to be accused of attacking Raila,” he said.

The 43-year-old musician was orphaned at a young age, forcing him onto the streets, where he says he spent nights on the roof of a bar in Homa Bay town.

But he bounced back to compose songs, this time for praise.

His success in music has taken him a long way, but not as far as he expected because of what he describes as betrayal and empty promises.

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According to the musician, the highest amount he has ever been paid for performing at local events is Sh30,000, which he says is not commensurate with his status as a veteran artist.

Sifa said his hard work in music has never been appreciated, and all the promises made by politicians after he composed songs praising them have never been fulfilled.

“I have gone through a lot of difficulties. Despite my struggles and uplifting many people, no one has appreciated what I do for them,” he said.

During the 2022 campaign, he composed two songs for two different politicians.

Also read: Benga artiste Atommy Sifa ‘exiled’ for anti-Raila song

According to the musician, he instead received threatening messages when one of the songs received more attention than the other.

“The other group perceived me as an enemy when a song they said was against them trended. I had to do the same for the other group to save my life, but I didn’t get paid for either,” said Sifa.

He prays for politicians who have risen partly because of the songs he has composed, praising them to pay for the services.

Sifa said he would use the money to finish the construction of his restaurant called Rock City Jungle Resort, located in the Adiedo trading centre.

“My restaurant has a section that is I did not finish constructing. The payment for the songs I composed will enable me to complete the project,” he said.

A communications officer for one of the political groups said that his team did not commission the song produced during the campaign and that they could not pay for it.

“There was no binding document that he was commissioned to make the song. He just did it and expects to be paid,” the official said.

As well as being accused of singing badly about others, Sifa said he was being targeted politically.

He was pushed to run for a ward representative seat in Kanyaluo. But he said he could not attend the polls because of unnecessary opposition.

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