‘Don’t bite the hand that feeds you’ so goes a popular saying. However, this saying remains hollow if the actions of a section of Kenyans is anything to go by. Like the rest of the populace, public figures have fallen victim to ungrateful individuals who they worked hard to uplift their status. The case of funnyman Jalango and how his employees played him dirty still reverberates across the country.
In this article, WoK compiles a list of Kenyan public figures who have been betrayed by the people they trusted and assisted.
Felix Odiwuor alias Jalango is a radio personality turned politician who is contesting for the Langata constituency parliamentary seat in the forthcoming general elections. The comedian in good terms with his workers and even hosted them on his show. He would occasionally post photos with them while enjoying drinks. The two workers – Eli Omundu and Morrison Litiema, with the help of Jalango-became brands on their own rights. However, on Saturday 4th June 2022, Jalango took to social media where he revealed that the duo had stolen money from his car and disappeared into the thin air. He went on to urge anyone who has information about the two to report to the nearest police station and will be given a Ksh 100,000 reward.
“Eli and Litiema are on the run, this morning they stole money from the car they were washing at home, their phones are off and they are running with their families. If you see them please report at the nearest police station. A reward of 100k for any information leading to their arrest,” he wrote.
Betty Kyalo was a news anchor at KTN and later on moved to Mediamax limited owned K24. The single mother of one, employed Consolota Wawira in May 2019 to help her take care of her daughter Ivanna. She paid her Ksh 18,000 per month and the two were doing well until sometime in 2020 when Betty claimed her househelp was stealing from her. The news anchor took to social media to advise parents to be keen with their nannies. Wawira on the other hand during an exclusive interview with Tuko, said that Betty was accusing her falsely and that it was just a scheme to kick her out.
Former Nairobi county governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko has also been a victim of this before. On 13th April 2022, a man identified as Alvin Chivondo was arrested for shoplifting foodstuff worth Ksh 3,615 from Naivas Supermarket. The 21 year old was arraigned in court and found guilty of theft and sentenced to one year imprisonment or a Ksh 100,000 fine. After the news went viral, Mike Sonko came out and paid for the young man’s fine to rescue him from going behind bars. Sonko would then give Alvin a one month’s worth of shopping as well as a job offer at his Upper Hill offices. A month later, Alvin was again arrested at Naivas Supermarket on Ronald Ngala Street attempting to steal maize flour. He was arrested and taken to Central Police Station.
Esther Akoth, famously known as Akothee, is a talented Kenyan singer and businesswoman. Akothee gave a woman identified as ‘Brenda’ an opportunity to be her photographer and videographer. Years later the woman came out to claim that Akothee didn’t pay her two months salary and that she owed her Ksh 60,000.
“I worked for you for two months, I delivered videos, Maasai Mara, Peptang Eldoret, Rue Baby’s Miss Universe, Akothee Safaris promos and those interviews you did with kina Mwende Macharia. I was never paid for any of these, not even a single shilling. Ama hizo trips za ndege was the mode of payment?” Brenda wrote on instagram.
However, singer Akothee came out to explain that Brenda failed to deliver on her videography work and instead offered the excuse that her computer crashed.
This situation has also happened among the political elites. Deputy President William Ruto played an instrumental role in ensuring Uhuru Kenyatta become the President of Kenya in the 2013 and 2017 general elections. After Uhuru took power for his second and last term, he fell out with Ruto and chose to work with opposition leader Hon. Raila Odinga. It is not clear what led to their fall out but as of now President Uhuru Kenyatta is campaigning and drumming support for Raila Odinga to succeed him and not his Deputy William Ruto.