By Prudence Minayo
The song unbwogable, whose lyrics were a mixture of Dholuo, English and Swahili took the nation by storm. It was on nearly everyone’s lips and was considered a revolutionary masterpiece in Kenya’s hip hop scenes.
Maji Maji and Gidi Gidi were the young artists behind this hit. However, as other songs took over, the duo stopped releasing music and each went their separate ways. Gidi went on to dominate the airwaves with his popular Radio Jambo program while Maji Maji disappeared from the limelight only to make a comeback through Ghetto radio.
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This article takes a look at Maji Maji’s life.
He was born Julius Ondijo Owino and in 2020 adopted Maji Maji as his legal name. The name change was done through Ashioya Mogire and Nkatha Advocates. He publicly announced this name change through a 31st March 2021 gazette notice.
In 2000, alongside Gidi Gidi, they released their debut album called Ismarwa. This was followed by Unbwogable in 2002. The song would be adopted by the Kibaki campaign team. In 2003, after being signed by Gallo Records Company, a South African Enterprises, they released their third album titled Many Faces. They won best overall group category at the 2003 Kisima Awards. Soon after, the group stopped performing and releasing songs.
Majimaji was later appointed the managing Director of Ghetto radio.
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In 2017, he vied for the Embakasi East county assembly seat but lost. During his campaign, he impressed on the voters how he had done a lot to help people in the grassroots. From ensuring access to healthcare, education to youth affairs.
In August 2020, he made his way to Parliament building where he confronted speaker Kenneth Lusaka on the division of revenue bill delay. He expressed dissatisfaction with how members of parliament were wasting time discussing the matter in order to come up with a conclusive division of revenue format.
In 2021, he declared his intentions to vie for the Seme Parliamentary seat under the ODM party.
On 22 April 2022, reports emerged that Maji Maji had been denied the chance to fly the ODM party ticket. The incumbent Member of Parliament Dr. James Nyikal was given a direct nomination. In a photo that made heavy rotation on social media, the artist is in a tight embrace with his mother as they cried following the ugly machinations by ODM and the money his son had spent on the campaign trail. She even mentioned a time when he was almost hit by a car during campaigns.
The artist is married to Vilda Otieno. The two met while both were trying to send money to relatives. He allowed Vilda to go first and the rest is history.