Renowned Kenyan linguist, author, and journalist Ken Walibora is dead. Prof Walibora, 56, lost his life after being knocked down by a matatu on Landhies Road in the Kenyan capital Nairobi on Friday. He had been missing since Friday, with his family searching for him for days. His body was later found at a mortuary in the city. He was one of Kenya’s most prolific authors, with about 40 book titles under his belt. Some of his most famous books include Siku Njema, which was used as a set book in Kenyan secondary schools, and Ndoto ya Amerika. Another one of his titles, Kidagaa Kimemwozea, was also a set book.
He also worked as a Kiswahili newsreader on NTV, which helped make him a household name across the country. He held a Ph.D. in Comparative Cultural Studies from Ohio State University in the US. He served as an assistant professor in African Languages at the University of Wisconsin before taking up the position of Kiswahili quality manager at Nation Media Group until January 2017. Prof Walibora was a vocal advocate for the use of Kiswahili as the language of the masses.