Bob Collymore Opens Up on Cancer Diagnosis

  • Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore on Wednesday night opened up on being diagnosed with cancer to lifestyle changes he had to make.

    Speaking on Jeff Koinange Live (JKL) revealed he had been feeling unwell before visiting his doctor who ran tests and referred him to a specialist in London.

    Collymore stated, "I had been feeling unwell for some time. I was tired, sometimes my body temperature would be high but that would last for 24 hours then I would feel fine again."

    He added, "I was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors told me at the time that I had probably had it for about 6 months... I went to London and they told me I had acute myeloid leukemia- a rare kind of blood cancer that is curable."

    [caption caption="Bob Collymore and his wife Wambui"][/caption]

    The Safaricom CEO told Jeff Koinange that his wife initially thought he had malaria then later visited a doctor in Nairobi, who told him he had a vitamin D deficiency.

    He admitted that he was taken back when his doctor told him treatment would take 6-9 months, but came back to Kenya and informed his team about his diagnosis and put systems in place for when he would be away.

    Mr Collymore also expressed his gratitude to his wife stating, "My wife made a big sacrifice, staying by my side. Spouses make great sacrifices when their partners are unwell."

    He also admitted to having taken time to reflect while he was away about that Kenyan who cannot afford such health care, whose cancer diagnosis comes when the disease has advanced in their body and urged people to exercise and trust in the science.

    Additionally, Mr Collymore added he was thankful to Kenyans from different walks of life who sent him messages wishing him a speedy recovery.

    [caption caption="Bob Collymore"][/caption]

    A number of Kenyans who were seemingly touched and impressed at the same time by Collymore’s bravery could not help but shower him with praise and encouragement online.

    Influential people in the country also reached out during the Wednesday night interview with messages of goodwill for the CEO including powerful businessman Chris Kirubi, Maina Kageni and Manu Chandaria.