The status of a celebrity attracts high expectations from supporters and critics. As a direct result, public figures who go bankrupt end up in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. A list of Kisii celebrities in Kenya who died poor is alarming.
Being famous is one thing and smiling at the bank is another. The reasons why these Gusii icons failed to monetize their talents range from ignorance to a lack of opportunities.
Tragic tales of 11 Kisii celebrities in Kenya who died poor
Becoming a celebrity is hard but not anymore, thanks to the sweeping influence of social media.
In the past, people hawked their skills on the streets without interviews and reliable channels of communication.
That is mostly why these favourite stars left nothing for their children except for a good legacy.
1. Egesa FM comedian Okebiro Omose
The 37-year-old Joseph Mochere popularly Okebiro Omose committed suicide on September 1, 2018, leaving behind a young family with no monetary security.
Some sources have revealed that Okebiro died without a decent house for his spouse Teresa Moraa and two kids.
Okebiro from Nyamira County was allegedly underpaid considering he lived in a single room house at Imara Daima Estate to the point of his fateful death.
2. Bana Sungusia Band vocalist Onsongo Omosongo
Bernard Onsongo Omosongo from Bogichora Ward in Nyamira County died at the age of 45 years with little investments and no decent house.
Constructing a house for the fallen hero delayed funeral arrangements as confirmed by Standard Media writer Nyambega Gisesa.
3. Nyandika Maiyoro among Kisii celebrities in Kenya who died poor
Gusii marathoner Nyandika Maiyoro, popularly Nyantika Mayioro, died on February 24, 2019, after battling long time sickness.
In 2014, he failed to pay a hospital bill of Ksh. 39,000 making it clear that he had not benefitted much from his overseas championships.
Yuvensius Nyandika Maiyoro lived a glorious youthful life but died in the status of a beggar.
4. Kirwanda Songa 78 Jazz Band master John Arisi O’Sababu
Born in 1954, John Arisi Osababu died in 1996 at the age of 42 years. He passed on at the prime of his timeless music career.
Listening to his wife Margret Nyanchama Arisi, sister Esther Nyangau Sababu, and brother Leonard Atuya Sababu reveals that Arisi died before claiming the fruits of his contributions to the local music industry.
5. Majoge One Jazz Band star Charles Omweri
Nakumirie Omongwana hitmaker Charles Omweri will forever live in our memories for his signature compositions.
Charles Omweri Siomeria Nkagokania is another one of his cool tracks from years ago.
Charles Omweri nickname Mwalimu Chief from Ibencho was a renowned solo guitarist with a strong passion for creative media.
Omweri hails from Kisii County in Moogi Village, Onseka sub-location, Ibencho, Kenyenya sub-county.
His grandchildren including James Obiri are lately singing in his decades-old Majoge One Jazz band.
6. Kisii celebrity and Kegogi Jazz Band owner Christopher Monyoncho
Veteran Kisii musician Christopher Monyoncho became a huge star in the 1970s after dropping the song Emeremo Yamasamba.
Apart from Kegogi Jazz Band, Monyoncho was a vocal singer in Henry Sitora’s Nyamwari Band.
He rose to the top charts with the nickname Riyo Riebasweti to mean a python skin.
Born in 1945 at Kegogi in Kitutu Chache, Monyoncho died in September 2013 at the age of 67 years.
Monyoncho left a couple of widows with a total of 14 children after a music career of 40 years and more than 1000 songs.
7. Nyakeyo Stars Band leader Erastus Otondi Nyakeyo
Marungu singer Erastus Otondi died on October 7, 2020, at Christa Marriane hospital in Kisii County after a long time of illness.
He died after selling off a better portion of his ancestral land because of high hospital bills.
8. Nyamecheo Jazz Band James Ragira Omwana Equincher
Gusii singer James Ragira of Nyamecheo Jazz Band died on November 27, 2020, in his early 40s.
Ragira passed on a day after returning to his Kisii home from Tenwek Hospital.
Politician Samuel Okemwa and gospel singer Douglas Otiso are among those who led a fundraiser for Ragira’s hospital bill and later funeral arrangements.
9. Bana Sungusia Band drummer Omorendire alias George Morara Nyangara
Omorendire died on November 20, 2018, barely a year after the death of Onsongo Omosongo.
He succumbed on his way to Nyamira Hospital having not accumulated enough wealth for his family.
The band also lost benga musician Haron Auta alias Ekiaramba in May 2019.
10. PhD man musician Mansamu Yegetonto
Dismas Nyang’au Onsoti, nicknamed Mansamu Yegetonto, was an accomplished Kisii traditional singer without sufficient income.
Nyangau Dismas was an industrious Kisii musician from the Iranda location, Kitutu Chache Constituency within Kisii County.
Mansamu Yegetonto born in 1968 started singing in 1994 using obokano, eight-stringed Kisii music instrument.
Nyangau Yegetonto alias Nyakebako was also an Egesa FM radio presenter between 2007 and 2008.
Kamba Nane singer and One Day Morning hitmaker died in 2008 at the age of 40 years.
The deceased Nyangau was a responsible family man with a beautiful wife and five children.
His only son Erick Nyangau Onsoti has since taken over the music play.
11. MP George Moseti Anyona in the list of Kisii celebrities who died poor
Lawmaker George Moseti Anyona is a rare case of a politician who died poor in 2003.
MP Anyona was born in 1945 at Tombe Village in Nyamira County. He died a humble man at the age of 58 years in a grisly accident along Lusaka Road in Nairobi.
The fallen Kisii MP stayed in the morgue for 7 months amid family disputes. He was eventually buried, a humble man without an extra coin in his pockets.
More low net worth Kisii celebrities in Kenya today
- Henry Motego
- Charles Nyangwoka
- Moses Oyaro Memba
Financial planning is an important skill that most people ignore until it is too late in life.
We can only assume that the enlisted old-time superstars had no proper ways of monetizing their skills in the analogue era.
Most Kisii celebrities in Kenya from years ago died poor except those who were in the political class. On the contrary, recent Gusii public figures are doing way better.