Prominent deaths of the decade
Kenya was robbed of prominent personalities this decade. Here are some of those who stood out:
1. Lucy Kibaki
She died in 2016, following a long illness.
She was 80. Lucy served as First Lady of the Republic of Kenya for 10 years during former President Mwai Kibaki’s tenure even though sickness forced her off the limelight in the last three years of her stint in office. She had a reputation as a no-nonsense personality who spoke her mind and earned admirers and haters in equal measure.
2. George Saitoti
He, alongside his deputy Interior Minister Orwa Ojode, died a painful death, courtesy of a plane accident in 2012. Many believe the country’s political landscape could be totally different if he were alive today. He was considered one of the front runners for the presidency. Saitoti was a professor of mathematics and had a chequered career in both civil and political service, serving as the country’s vice-president for more than a decade.
3. Joseph Nkaissery
He became the third security minister to die this decade, five years after Saitoti and Ojode. He reportedly collapsed and was declared dead in hospital hours later, in the heat of the contested general elections. He looked healthy and in charge during his stint serving at the sensitive office, a state that left very many question marks over how he could suddenly die.
4. Bob Collymore
Although a corporate boss, Bob Collymore had by the time of his death in 2019, become influential on the political scene. The Safaricom CEO succumbed to cancer, leaving behind a rich legacy as one who influenced the youth, artistes, plus sportsmen and women in equal measure.
5. Chris Msando
He was the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s ICT boss at the time of his death. He was murdered in cold blood a week to the 2017 general election and his killers have never been apprehended to face the law. Roselyn Akombe, his colleague at the time, is on record saying Msando was silenced owing to his sensitive position in the body.