How Afya Sacco gave former chairman Vitalis Lukiri a hero’s send-off

The late Vitalis Lukiri

Soon after Mr Lukiri’s death, the Sacco CEO Felix Ndoi galvanized a small management team into action, liaising with family members and the funeral planning committee, to see to it that his former chairman was accorded what is equivalent to a state funeral/burial!

By The Weekly Vision Online

Afya Sacco’s board of directors led by chair Beatrice Mogire and the management headed by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Felix Ndoi in October this year gave its former long-serving chairman the late Vitalis Lukiri a hero’s sendoff following his untimely death at the Nairobi Hospital on September 15th, 2021 at 11.00 pm from what doctors at the facility termed as “Respiratory Arrest.” 

Soon after Mr Lukiri’s death, the Sacco CEO Felix Ndoi galvanized a small management team into action, liaising with family members and the funeral planning committee, to see to it that their former chairman was accorded what is equivalent to a state funeral/burial!

Afya Sacco CEO Felix Ndoi

Mr Lukiri had in close working collaboration with the current CEO Felix Ndoi turned around the giant Sacco’s fortunes from a struggling entity with an accumulated assets base and savings of a few hundred million shillings into the giant that it is today, with more than Ksh18.5 billion in assets by the end of the 2020 financial year. Afya Sacco is now ranked 5th among the top ten billionaire Saccos in the country.

The Sacco management is said to have cleared a massive hospital bill that had accumulated from the day of his admission on September 11th, 2021 to his death on September 15th 2021. They also took care of the bill at Lee funeral home, transportation for burial to his rural home in Busia County among many others things

Sources within Afya Sacco revealed to The Weekly Vision Online that since Mr Ndoi took over as CEO, the once bothersome delays in loan disbursement to members is now a thing of the past, he has completely cleared up the issue to the extent that members no longer experiences loan backlogs or delays. A senior board member who declined to be named said: “As a matter of fact our members are now getting their loans approved with speed, processed and delivered within a very short time compared to previous years under the former CEO.”

In the recent past Afya Sacco has been a subject of negative publicity both in the mainstream and online media platforms for the wrong reasons, but the Sacco has been a champion of un-equalled performances in the country’s Sacco Movement. The Sacco management is said to have cleared a massive hospital bill that had accumulated from the day of his admission on September 11th, 2021 to his death on September 15th 2021. They also took care of the bill at Lee funeral home, transportation for burial to his rural home in Busia County among many others things, Ms. Mogire and Mr Ndoi’s performance was great. 

Afya Sacco’s front office entrance

The Sacco was ably represented during the farewell mass service held at the Minor Holy Family Basilica on September 30th, 2021 before the body was flown to Busia the following day for burial on Saturday, October 2nd, 2021. The Afya Sacco’s board was led by its chairperson Beatrice Mogire and the top management, branch leaders from all the Sacco’s branches across the country, former and current were present during the funeral.

At the funeral, the public health department and ministry of health was present, the team was led by the KPHOC boss Dr Kepha Ombacho, Mr Mohammed Duba, a senior colleague at the JKIA work station S.G. Kariuki among others eulogized the late Lukiri as – “a great leader, a man of the people and a hero. “It was clear that the late Lukiri was truly a treasured member and leader of Afya Sacco going by the number of people who attended his burial ceremony. That they valued and cherished him in death, just as they had when he was still alive.  

The late Lukiri’s name will appear in the annals of the cooperative movement history in the country for a long time to come, not because he had been part of for over three decades, but because of mastering the art of survival and a rare civil service acumen that had seen him bestride the Sacco landscape like a colossus. 

Mr Lukiri was a person many were happy to seek advice from on a wide range of contemporary issues. His great wisdom, experience and cooperative compass provided excellent guidance. He was a real defender of the cause of the cooperative movement. He left behind an indelible trace in the history of the sector as well as an unforgettable impression upon the mind of those who had a chance to meet him.

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