Kenyans will be borrowing another leaf from departed Bob Collymore who will be laid to rest today, a day after his shocking death. Going by his sentiments to friends, he was prepared for the next life but for Kenyans, he was still the man who admired and respected for having led the biggest firm in East and Central Africa in stellar performance for seven years.
Safaricom Chairman Nicholas Ng’ang’a affirmed that “Bob will be laid to rest tomorrow (today) in a private ceremony and a memorial will be held either on Thursday or Friday but more information will be shared in due course,” said the chairman. He will be cremated.
In his befitting eulogy, Radio Africa Group CEO Patric Quarcoo said “he caused a change in all his friends – he made us more human, warmer like himself and willing to open up and sometimes vulnerable. He made me and a bunch of stuck-up men unbutton our shirts and become men who thought a lot more about purpose.”
Michael Joseph, the former CEO and Board member added “You’ve all experienced Bob, his largeness, his enthusiasm, his greatness, his affinity with people and I think that’s what has driven this company and what Bob has done for this company.”
Kenyans of all walks of life took to Twitter to express their appreciation of the life he lived with them.
“It is with deep sadness that I have this morning received news of the death of Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore after years of battling cancer. As a country, we’ve lost a distinguished corporate leader whose contribution to our national wellbeing will be missed” ~ H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta
— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) July 1, 2019
Bob Collymore invited us for lunch with his mum at his house. My kids hadn’t carried swimming costumes and one of my sons decided to swim in his underwear. In protest, my daughter jumped into the pool, in her clothes.Bob laughed, then gave her a Safcom T-shirt to wear as a dress. pic.twitter.com/PHDBMDMIFI
— Boniface Mwangi (@bonifacemwangi) July 1, 2019
Bob Collymore made motherhood bearable in Safaricom plc. He charmed mothers by introducing 4 months maternity leave, 6 months working halfday post maternity leave, 7am to 5.30pm daycare with qualified professional caregivers, fully equipped lactation rooms.#RIPBobCollymore
— NANCY OKUTAH (@nancyokutah) July 1, 2019
— Bitange Ndemo (@bantigito) July 1, 2019
Just to say, Bob Collymore was one of those rare corporate types who took art, and artists, seriously. Treated us like people who matter, who do important work in this our Kenya. He was rare, he was kind. This is all so terribly sad. Rest well.
— ngwatilo (@ngwatilo) July 1, 2019
Bob Collymore was a distinguished corporate titan, whose shrewd leadership at the helm of Safaricom was commendable. He steered the company to new heights and contributed immensely to the evolution of Kenya’s corporate scene.
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) July 1, 2019
Bob Collymore did so much for Kenyan creatives. The amount of support artistes have received from Safaricom is immeasurable. And he was so hands-on about it too. He freely interacted with everyone and (most surprisingly refreshing) actually knew who you were when you chatted.
— Mwende Ngao 🇰🇪 (@mwendesusu) July 1, 2019
Bob Collymore is an exemplar Of Integrity, Fortitude & Leadership Excellence. Inspite Of Heading the biggest company in Eastern Africa & having Cancer, he had time for his friends. He always saw me when I asked. Always called or texted back. Few Kenyans in top leadership compare.
— Donald B Kipkorir (@DonaldBKipkorir) July 1, 2019
Born on 13th January 1958 in Guyana, he died on 1st July 2019 (61 years old) in Nairobi. Fare thee well.