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Chris Kirubi’s farewell Twitter message

Businessman and industrialist Chris Kirubi breathed his last on Monday, hours after he’d sent a goodwill message to his followers on social media.

The 80-year old’s family announced his demise in a brief message.

He’s battled cancer for close to a decade.

“It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. Christopher J Kirubi (1941-2021), who passed away today, Monday the 14th of June, 2021 at 1 pm at his home after a long battle with cancer, fought with fortitude, grace, and courage. He was surrounded by his family,” a statement from the family said.

Considered one of the wealthiest people, Kirubi built an empire in real estate, media agriculture, and had shares in several firms, including national carrier Kenya Airways, Centum Investment Company PLC, and Chairman of the company’s Board Finance and Investment Committee.

He was also the chairman of Brand Kenya, DHL Express Kenya Limited, Haco Industries Kenya Limited, Kiruma International Limited, International House Limited, Nairobi Bottlers Limited, Sandvik East Africa Limited, and 98.4 Capital FM

“Top of the morning to you, my dear friend. It doesn’t have to be a tiring Monday. Instead, I bring to you good tidings of favour, success, achievements, and happiness in the new week. Give yourself a go towards your success plan. Enjoy today and the rest of your week,” he wrote to his 1.5 million followers on Twitter on Monday morning.

Hours later, he was no more.

He leaves behind two children.

In an earlier interview, the businessman explained his cancer was discovered by mistake.

“They took my blood and quickly ran checks, only to return to tell me that I was very sick and needed to go with them to the hospital. They rushed me through the Emergency section straight to the High Dependency Ward at Nairobi Hospital. I’m told my eyes were yellow, and my fever was shooting through the roof. From there it was a series of tests for the next few days as they observed my situation.

“When they finally finished, they broke the news to me that I had stage two cancer, which was affecting my internal organs including the lungs and kidneys. They said I needed to fly out of the country urgently for treatment,” he said back then.

President Uhuru Kenyatta, DP William Ruto, and opposition leader Raila Odinga have mourned him.

“I have received the shocking news of the passing away of my friend Chris Kirubi with alot of sadness. The cruel hand of death has robbed our nation of a patriot whose entrepreneurial spirit, hard work, and determination saw him create some of our country’s largest enterprises which offer employment to thousands of our people,” the President mourned.

“I join Kenyans in mourning the passing of one of the country’s most visible business personalities. Chris Kirubi was an irrepressible boardroom operative, media personality, developer, and investor whose interests traversed multiple sectors and enterprises,” said Ruto.

“Chris Kirubi was my friend and one to many others and a mentor to even more. He was a dedicated entrepreneur and philanthropist who helped scores of Kenyans over time. My heartfelt condolences go to his family, friends, and all those whose lives he touched,” added Odinga.