WhatsApp group raise Sh 1.8 Million for Benga Musician Sukuma bin Ongaro plight

 

Mr Omutere, popularly known as Sukuma bin Ongaro new house
Mr Omutere, alias Sukuma bin Ongaro new house. FILE

 

When destroyed parts of Kakamega County, in March this year, legendary benga musician Wilson Omutere was amongst thousands of families which were relocated from their homes by the floods.


 

Mr Omutere, popularly known as Sukuma bin Ongaro, lives in Ebukambuli Emutetemo village, Mulwanda area of Kisa Central location in Khwisero constituency, Kakamega County.

 

His home was swept when River Yala burst its banks. The furious waters from the river engulfed his compound, devastated crops and property, forcing him to relocate his family to a neighbour’s home.

 

However, after the floods, his fans came to his rescue.


Life for Mr Ongaro, 74, who is married to two wives, Beatrice Ayoyi and Rose Khatenje, was about to change after his misfortune.



The father of 12 made a request on social and mainstream media asking for help to rebuild his home.


His appeals reached far and wide. In May, an NGO by the name ‘Aseka Miradi Foundation’ donated foodstuff and constructed for him a semi-permanent house. The group bought 33 iron sheets to roof the house.

 

The benga musician also got the assistance of a group of former pupils of St Peter’s Mumias Boys Primary School.



“When we heard of our brother Sukuma bin Ongaro's plight we were very concerned and decided to do something for him,” said Bernard Washika, one of the group’s administrators.



Mr Washika said the group formed a WhatsApp group to raise funds which would be given to its members on their birthdays.

 

The group, comprising more than 200 members, decided to use the money they had already raised to support Sukuma bin Ongaro by constructing a modern house for him and furnishing it.


“In May, we decided to collect funds from members through M-Pesa and visited Ongaro's home to start constructing the house. We could not sit back and watch Ongaro going through misery after what happened to him and his family,” said Mr Washika.

 

However, Mr Ongaro said he surprised when people he did not know visited him with masons to lay the foundation of his new house.

 

“They introduced themselves and told me that they were my fans. They said they had been touched by my situation. I did not believe it when they showed me the plan of the house they intended to build for me," said Ongaro noting that God had answered his prayers.

 

The group, which consists of professionals in various fields, raised Sh1.8 million for the construction of the house which will be complete by December 25 when all members will celebrate their Christmas at bin Ongaro’s new home.

 

The three-bedroomed house has two toilets, a kitchen, a dining room, a store and a kitchen with a spacious sitting room.

 

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