NYAGARAMA THE MAN
John Obiero Nyagarama was born in Nyakemincha, Nyamira, Nyamira County in 1946. He received his primary school education at Nyakemincha Primary School in West Mugirango Constituency. His O-levels were taken at Maseno School and his A-levels at Kisii High School. He then attended the University of Nairobi
Having graduated from the University of Nairobi, Nyagarama worked as a teacher at Nduru Boys Secondary School from 1975 to 1976. He then taught at Nyanshiongo Boys High School until 1978, when he transferred to Menyenya High School. He was among the first to teach there and stayed for a period of four years. He later stopped teaching and began farming, focusing on tea production. He joined the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) as a management trainee and eventually became a manager in various KTDA branches countrywide. He was managing director of the privately-owned Sotik Tea Factory from 1991 to 1992.
Leaving tea farming, Nyagarama joined Touchline Press Limited, a private publishing company, as its chief executive officer, before going on to establish a tea export company in Mombasa, Kenya in 1993. In 1994, he was elected to serve on the KTDA’s board as a director representing the tea zones of Marani, in Kisii County, and certain centers within Nyamira County. He continued to hold various roles for the KTDA from 1994 to 2013. He also served as the chairman of Kenya Tea Packers Limited (KETEPA) between 1996 and 2002, and was among the founders of the Chai Trading Company in 2011, serving as chairman until his resignation in 2013 to pursue a political career.
His friend PM Raila Odinga led Kenyans in sending Messages of condolence
I am deeply saddened to learn of Governor John Nyagarama’s death. My sympathies to his family and the people of Nyamira as we mourn his death and reflect on his life. Nyagarama has been an extraordinary partner in strengthening devolution. I will forever cherish moments with him on duty and as personal friends. May His Soul Rest In Eternal Peace. — Party Leader of ODM Raila Odinga
The President wished Governor Nyagarama’s family and the people of Nyamira County God’s comfort and fortitude as they come to terms with the County leader’s death. In a condolence message to the Governor’s family, the President eulogised Mr Nyagarama, 74, as a friendly, approachable, wise, witty and kind leader. The President wished Governor Nyagarama’s family and the people of Nyamira County God’s comfort and fortitude as they come to terms with the County leader’s death. — President Uhuru Kenyatta (Twitter/@statehousekenya)
We are saddened by the loss of Nyamira Governor John Nyagarama, a selfless and formidable champion for devolution who was genuinely dedicated to public service. Progressive, steadfast and responsive, Governor Nyagarama was industrious, focussed and firm. He will be remembered as a leader who built a better, more inclusive and more transformed Nyamira. Our thoughts and prayers to the Nyagarama family, their loved ones, the people of Nyamira and the Governors of Kenya during this time of sorrow. Rest In Peace, Governor Nyagarama. — Deputy President William Ruto (Twitter/@WilliamsRuto)
It is with great sorrow and deep sense of loss that we have learnt of the sudden demise of our brother His Excellency Governor, John Nyagarama which occurred this morning at Nairobi Hospital after a short illness. The Late, was the first and incumbent Governor of the County Government of Nyamira. The Council of Governors has not only lost a great leader, but a focused, action-oriented man who served the people of Nyamira with diligence and love. He was humble and a stickler to administrative order. This was demonstrated during his first tenure where he served in the Education Committee having been a trained, qualified and experienced teacher. We will also miss his wise counsel in the Agriculture Committee where he was a member who was passionate about tea farming having been a tea farmer himself and previously served in various Tea production and regulatory institutions.
On behalf of the Council of Governors I convey our deepest condolences and sympathies to his wife, children, siblings and family and the Nyamira constituents for this great loss. May our prayers serve as comfort for you and your loved ones at this trying time.
Signed — H.E. Hon. Dr. FCPA Wycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya, EGH, CGJ Chairman, Council of Governors (Twitter/@KenyaGovernors)