Long-serving journalist and career civil servant Margaret Kinya Kirera, who has been serving as the Laikipia County Information Officer died Saturday after a short illness.
Ms. Kirera, 55 passed on at the Nanyuki Teaching and Referral Hospital, where she had been rushed by close family members.
The deceased, a dedicated employee of the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs joined the Civil service in the year 1989 after having attained a Diploma in journalism from the Kenya Institute of Mass Communication in Nairobi.
She rose through the ranks in Government having previously served in the then Nyeri, Murang’a South District Information Offices and lately in Laikipia where she was the County Information boss.
The late Kirera attended Kiirua primary school and then joined the prestigious St. Mary’s girls’ high school Igoji in Meru county.
She would later work briefly as a volunteer clerical officer at the department of Information before joining KIMC for professional training.
Kirera performed exemplary well at the college and she immediately secured direct employment in the civil service as an Information Officer upon her graduation.
She is survived by her daughter Keziah Kagwiria, currently working as a communication officer at the Laikipia County Revenue Board.
Meanwhile, members of the media fraternity in Nanyuki have eulogized the late Kirera as a jovial person, ever smiling and who always e others through her daily inspirational and religious quotes from the Bible.
“I will forever remember Maggie, as she was fondly called, as the most inspirational colleague I ever had in my entire service in government,” said the Laikipia East Deputy County Commissioner (DCC) Esther Mwamure.
The void left by the deceased will be hard to fill bearing in mind her very industrious nature and mobilization skills especially for the local media teams to cover and report on happenings in the area, added Mwamure.
“This is a big blow to us. As residents of Laikipia were saddened by her sudden demise but her memories shall forever remain with us,” said the DCC Monday when she led a team of local journalists to late Kirera’s home in Kibirichia, Meru County.
On his part, Laikipia County Nation based correspondent James Murimi described Kirera as a mother who had mentored him since his initial days of posting to the area while working for different newspaper.
Nanyuki based Royal Media Services reporter Sharon Nkonge also described her departed colleague as a second mother who received her warmly as a daughter when she was posted to the station three years ago.
“I came here looking so green in the profession but thank God Margaret took me to every news venues and also introduced to all the sources. Today I am this far because of her,” an emotional Ms. Nkonge told KNA Monday.
The County Director of Communications Muchiri Gitonga termed the late Kirera as a dependable colleague who worked tirelessly to ensure all National and County government operations we given the media publicity they deserved.
The County Executive Committee Member for Finance and Economic planning Murungi Ndai said Kirera worked so tirelessly that it was hard to distinguish if she worked for the National or County government.
“Her work cut across the two levels of government you would hardly tell she was not one of us yet she worked for the National Government. We will surely miss her industrious nature in handling communications in government institutions,” Ndai told a burial committee meeting held in Nanyuki town Monday evening.
This writer as well, who was Kirera’s office colleague in Nanyuki termed her death as not only devastating but also shocking to many.
Maggie ensured that those working under her had a conducive working environment so that they could always perform their best. Death has robbed the Department of Information of a truly dedicated officer.
Meanwhile, the bereaved family has settled on Friday November 6th as the burial date where the deceased will be interred at her family’s rural home in Kibirichia, Meru County.
Family Spokesman and elder brother to the departed soul Stephen Muriungi Kirera told KNA Monday that the family was putting in place an elaborate burial plan to give her a befitting send-off.
“Margaret brought pride to this family through her hard and dedicated work in the civil service where she has served diligently for over three decades. We owe her a befitting send off,” Muriungi told mourners including Nanyuki based journalists who thronged her rural home on Monday.
By Martin Munyi