Hillary Ngweno- nuclear physicist turned journalist dead at 83

By The Weekly Vision

 Ngweno’s parents migrated from Lunyo sub-county in Busia Uganda to Kenya and then to Nairobi where he was born in 1938. Hillary came from the wider Samia tribe who call both Kenya and Uganda home. 

He leaves behind a widow, children and several grandchildren. He had earlier built a house in the Lukhoni area, Butabona sub-location in Funyula, Busia County from where he is likely to be laid to rest.

Ngweno published the longest surviving weekly magazine in East Africa, Weekly Review which often bore the wrath of former president Daniel Arap Moi’s repressive regime forcing him to tone down against the regime

The Samia Welfare Group then chaired by the late Nathaniel Ouma Nyanja, Thomas Mengo and Daniel Mulucha held a fund drive in Nairobi to send the young Ngweno for advanced studies to Britain then to Harvard in the USA in the early 1960s. For some strange reasons only known to him, Ngweno opted to study nuclear physics.

He published the longest surviving weekly magazine in East Africa, Weekly Review which often bore the wrath of former president Daniel Arap Moi’s repressive regime forcing him to tone down against the regime. 

The advent of a multi-party system of governance in 1990-92 witnessed new publishers arrive on the scene, more fearless and fiercely independent, like Society Magazine, Nairobi Law Monthly, Star Weekly and Daily Post. 

Ngweno’s Weekly Review became irrelevant and he was forced to fold after 27 years of publishing. He went into electronic media launching Sky TV which he later sold to a South African franchise.

Ngweno’s final days seemed to have been full of bitterness as he watched helplessly as his media empire collapse, he became a familiar figure on the streets of Nairobi walking alone looking troubled and deep in thoughts. He never went back to his Lunyo home despite losing both parents and other relatives in what many villagers say could have had a traumatizing experience on him. He also authored The Men From Pretoria.

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