Background and Education
The Late Bob Collymore was born in the year 1958 in Guyana where he lived with his grandparents. He started his schooling while still under his grandmother’s care until age 16 when he moved to live with his mother in the United Kingdom, this was in the year 1974. While in the UK, he joined Selhurst High School for boys and completed his formal education in the same school. During some of his speeches mentioned that he had no degrees, however, his tremendous achievements left many motivated.
In 2018 during one of his interviews with a local media station, the late Bob Collymore revealed that he had been married three times and divorced twice. He said his first marriage during his 20s was a mistake while the second one failed due to a mistake in how the marriage was conducted. Until his demise, Collymore was married to Ms. Clare Wambui Kamiri whom he met during a fundraiser for the survivors of Loreto Convent Msongari school bus crash that happened in July 2011. Ms. Wambui attended the event as an alumnus while Bob represented Safaricom Foundation. His friends tribute him as a jovial, social and a happy man. He has left behind a wife and four children.
Bob started working at an early age, he revealed that he started earning money at the age of 12 when he made and sold pieces of art from plastic molds and little brooches from coconut shells, this was way back in Guyana when he lived with his grandmother. Before Safaricom, the late Bob Collymore worked in the UK, South Africa and Japan in several executive roles in Retail, Purchasing, Marketing, Governance and Corporate Affairs. In summary he had more than 30 years of commercial experience working in senior executive roles in the telecommunications sector.
Until his death, Collymore held the positions of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Safaricom PLC a position he took over from Michael Joseph in November 1, 2010. During his tenure he bagged several awards including the CEO of the year award that was conferred by African investor.
Death and Illness
The late Bob Collymore was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia, a rare form of blood cancer in 2017, at a London hospital. According to the doctor’s report, the deceased had the disease for approximately six months by the time he was diagnosed. He fought the disease and battled it with high spirits even during his last moments on earth. He succumbed to the cancer on Monday 1st July 2019 at his home in Nairobi and cremated in Nairobi’s Kariokor Crematorium. He died at age 61. Rest in Peace Bob!
Article by: Linzer Kibebe