Bullied Kenyan Celebrities: Kenya is one of the leading users of the internet in the Globe, this notwithstanding, authorities have done very little, if anything, to create awareness on cyberbullying and holding those behind the crimes culpable.
Internet comes with access to numerous social media platforms whose doors are open to both respectable and not-so-respectable people in the country. Social media users, in general, are exposed to bullying from a select few who most likely are too bitter to contain themselves.
Celebrities in Kenya are the most exposed given their huge following as some of the bullies through jabs at them as publicity stunts. Celebrities who have on numerous occasions been on the receiving end from bullies, who are loudest and most ruthless behind their keyboards and screens, have either succumbed to the pressure emotionally, ignored it, deleted their pages or simply pretended to have heard or seen the jabs.
Jimmy Gait is one celebrity who has faced the wrath and mockery of Kenyans online following his release of the song titled ‘Yesu ndiye Sponsor’ in June 2016.
The term sponsor had been twisted by Kenyans to mean a man or woman, especially the aged ones, who finance the lifestyles of younger men or women for sexual favors.
Kenyans on social media platforms criticized Jimmy Gait on the song terming it disrespectful to God. An emotional soft-spoken Jimmy Gait shed tears on a live television interview as he narrated how affected he’d gotten with the bashing.
“People forgot about all the good songs I had done for close to nine years and started insulting me saying all sort of things. It was difficult for me because I am human. Just one song made Kenyans think that I am trash,” Jimmy Gait argued as he yielded to emotions.
The situation was to worsen when the gospel artiste released a mash-up of ‘Hello’ by Adelle. Much is no longer heard of his music which raises concern on did Kenyan bullies online shutter Jimmy Gaits music star?
Former NTV presenter, Kobi Kihara, had it rough with Kenyans online who literally roasted her for what they termed as Plagiarism.
Kobi, who was in the United States at the time to pursue a design course at the prestigious design school in New York, mocked after an observant fan noted that a photo of a plate of salad she had claimed to have prepared was actually from getting from the internet.
Kenyans even came up with a #KobiKiharaChallenge and #KobiWithAnEye, which she had used when sharing photos on Instagram.
Kobi was mocked for faking her lifestyle where she had even posted a photo of a baby; she had pulled from another user and pretended to be the Aunty. Kobi Kihara’s actions revealed a desperate situation where Kenyan celebrities are going through unimaginable heights to get validated.
Kobi Kihara ended the whole drama by deleting all her social media accounts, a sign she was really troubled by the trolls.
Adelle Onyango, Kiss FM Presenter, had a nasty interaction with one, obviously, mentally disturbed Facebook user in October 2014.
A social media bully compared the presenter to a monkey. The bully posted a photoshopped meme with an insulting comparison of a monkey next to Adelle.
The post was followed by a comment from another Facebook bully reading “You are pretty, very pretty, just fix your teeth. I am sure you can more than afford it. Plus your smile is pretty just the teeth.”
Adelle did not take it lying down and hit back with the following reply, “I don’t describe to your definition of beauty or perfection. How sad must your life be to go around pointing out at what people have to change about themselves?
I pray that you get over whatever insecurities your life is drenched in and seek life, not perfection. I like my teeth just fine.” Her reply seemed to have hit home with the bully going quiet.
During a New Year’s performance, in Nakuru, the soft-spoken Kambua allegedly snatched a microphone from her Emceeing colleague and the online bullies came in on her as if their lives depended on it.
Kambua is known to keep her private life just that but Kenya’s online bullies will just not mind their own business. Online bullies unanimously concluded that the beautiful songstress was married to a man way too old for her. The misconception went viral immediately she when was announced the brand ambassador of Darling Kenya. The bullies were obviously ‘choking’ with her success.
The beautiful Kambua has also faced cyberbullying for not bearing a child unto which she responded that it was not good to judge since people did not know what she was going through.
Lynda Nyangweso, a popular radio presenter, on May 2013, found herself facing bullies after a photo of her was posted on Twitter.
Twitter users jumped on to the photo savagely attacking the talented radio presenter over her weight. Mean and demeaning tweets were sent right, left and centre as the keyboard scavengers went on oblivious of the presenter’s feelings
Linda, however, did not allow the bullies to get to her as she wrote, “omg woke up this morning to realize people have discovered my secret: I’M FAT.”
Judith Nyambura Mwangi aka Avril
Judith Nyambura Mwangi famous as Avril was attacked on social media on April 2015. The celebrated Kenyan musician posted a photo where she had no makeup on, revealing heavy acne markings on her forehead.
Kenyans on social media called her ugly while some proceeded to create memes with insults about her acne and pimples to troll her.
She was chosen as the face of Oriflamme Kenya and became the spokesperson of ‘I Am Beautiful’, immediately after this ordeal. Oriflamme seeks to help women realize their beauty.
Four months later the musician cum actress posted: “They laughed at me about 4 months ago. Ridiculed me to a point I didn’t even understand what for. Made memes and called me ugly.
But guess what, my acne scars are slowly fading away! My forehead doesn’t have even one pimple yet that was the heaviest affected bit on my face.
No condition is permanent. Always remember that. Thank you, Oriflame for helping me understand my skin. Give me another 4 months and my skin will be completely healed.”
Above is just but a few of the celebrities whom online Kenyan bullies have enjoyed roasting forgetting that they too are human and prone to error.
Bullying is a sign of deep-rooted personal bitterness or psychological problems where one seeks validation. Online bullying is mostly worsened by users who seek validation by likes or retweet which is just pathetic.