December 26, 2019. The day after Christmas. Meshach Keith Bwisa travels back to his rented house in Kakamega after spending Christmas with his family in Busia. He has more than Sh25,000 in his mobile wallet. His plan is to use the money to bet and end the year as a millionaire.
Bwisa, who had had too many fights with his family and girlfriend over his gambling addiction, places the bets of his life while in Kakamega. He then waits for his money to start coming in.
Unfortunately, it was not his day. He watched helplessly as his bets went bad and he lost all the money except just Sh250. At this point, Bwisa realised he could not take any more losses. It was too much for him.
He retreated to his house, locked himself in, got into his bedroom, lit a jiko, closed all ventilations, swallowed a pill suspected to have been poison, and slept away for good.
Bwisa, 27, a gentleman extraordinaire, nicknamed ‘governor’ due to his generosity, was living in Shikambi village, Kakamega County. His body was found in his house on the morning of December 29. He had left behind a note.
“Vijana work hard for your money. Betting is bad.”
His family buried him hurriedly far away from home, without a ceremony, in line with Luhya culture on burying relatives who have taken their own lives.
In their small village in Busia, Bwisa’s family marked the third anniversary of his death this week. But there was to be no celebration. There were no candles. But the events of December 2019, when they found their son, Bwisa dead, in his house in Kakamega, are still fresh.
It has been three painful years since Bwisa’s passing and the family has for the very first time opened up to Nation.Africa on the events of that fateful Christmas period.
The Gamblers Paradise goes behind the scenes to retell the biggest betting stories of 2021 through a four-part documentary series starting tomorrow on Nation.Africa.
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