So much has been said about Bob Collymore. His friends have come out to speak of their relationship with Bob and of the great man he was.
Employees at Safaricom have spoken highly of him. His widow told members of the public who were attending his memorial on Thursday last week not to wear black because “we’re not mourning Bob; we’re celebrating him.”
The Head of State himself told of how he visited the man a week to his demise and they talked about, among other things, corruption and legacies.
I didn’t know the man personally, but even I was moved to tears by some of the tributes I heard. So much so that I decided I would write something about him. He impacted all our lives; directly or indirectly.
M-Shwari was launched just I was about to go to college, and roughly a year or so after Bob had been put in charge of Safaricom.
That was the beginning of the transition from just a sim card company to a full on telecommunications hub.
Bob moved Safaricom from a mere telecommunications company to a fully-fledged bank; and he may not have realised this by then, but – with that single move – he had changed the lives of so many comrades.
Now, when we’re broke, we don’t have to worry. We can get loans at the touch of a button, literally. Back when I was joining campus, we desperately needed those loans, these days’ campuses have a bunch of students who ask their parents for money for everything, and they get it.
Besides loans, I want us to remember Bob because he taught us that education is not everything.
Ninety per cent of the youth go to campus just to please their parents.
We do not take our time to learn and fail and learn again. But Bob Collymore did not even set foot into a university; yet he ran possibly the biggest company this side of the Sahara.
Education is important, but it is not everything. It is not a guarantee that you will have a ‘dope’ life simply because you set foot in campus. But the fact that you’re here means you have an edge over Bob.
So do not just spend all your time in the library, spend a little bit of it networking too. Bob said you can learn so much about someone by just talking to them.
So talk to your peers, learn about them and learn from them. Chances are you will get so much more out there than you will in a classroom.
I want to say thank you to Bob Collymore for changing the lives of comrades. He will surely be missed.
Rest well, Bob.