Watch Citizen TV's Trevor Ombija Struggle With Swahili Bulletin

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    Citizen TV news anchors Mashirima Kapombe (left) and Trevor Ombija (right)
  • Citizen TV prime time news anchor Trevor Ombija struggled to read Swahili news minutes to a live bulletin, on Wednesday, August 11.

    The challenge was fronted to Ombija by his colleague, Mashirima Kapombe, in a behind-the-scenes video shared by the latter on her social media pages. 

    Ombija picked the bulletin scripted on pamphlets, a backup to the teleprompter, minutes after the duo walked into the Citizen TV studios with beaming smiles ready for the challenge. 

    Aya swadakta kabisa. Karibu kwenye Citizen Nipashe naitwa Trevor Ombija

    Citizen TV news anchors Mashirima Kapombe (left) and Trevor Ombija (right)

    “(Welcome to today's Citizen Nipashe. My name is Trevor Ombija),” the English news anchor and Monday Report show host introduced himself, but was cut short by Kapombe who corrected him, stating that the show was not Citizen Nipashe but Sema na Citizen

    Citizen Nipashe airs at 7 pm daily while Sema na Citizen airs repeatedly during the day. Ombija broke into laughter and shied away from the camera after seemingly realising he had failed his first test. 

    The anchor requested Kapombe to have another take. Kashirima introduced herself and the show as the first anchor, eloquently showcasing her mastery of the Swahili language, an art she has perfected and executed for over a decade. 

    However, as Trevor joined in, he stuttered, jumbling English and Swahili and preferring to spice his diction with Sheng language. 

    “Aahha, swadakta kabisa. Tuna story nyingi kweli ambapo tunaanza na nini, headlines,” he looked at Kapombe hoping she would come to his rescue and translate some English words to Swahili. 

    “Headlines is yaliyomo,” Kapombe explained, leaned on the pulpit and nearly bowed her head in her palm. “Jameni, this would be a disaster if we were on live air,” she added as they both burst out laughing. 

    Ombija composed himself and proved to Kapombe that he could eloquently read Swahili news. The two rehearsed the bulletin as Kapombe prepared to go on live air. 

    Watch the video