Catherine Kasavuli Biography
Since 1980s Millions of Kenyans relished every moment Catherine Kasavuli entered the scene. Her elegancy of speaking fluently was something to be admired by young upcoming journalist. At the time she was the pioneer of broadcasts. The veteran journalist built a career for the last four decade, including a famous comeback in 2020 on Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) to host a Legend Edition show every weekend.
The veteran scribe succumbed to death at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) on Friday, December 30, after battling cancer for some years. Barely weeks colleagues and practitioners started online campaign in aid to raise her treatment finds. In October after she was admitted to KNH friends and colleagues came together and mobilized a blood drive.
Catherine was born on 1962 in Kenya. She was raised in Nairobi, like other village girls she went to Ngara Girls High School where she studied her secondary education. In 1982, she enrolled at the Kenya Institute of Mass Communication (KIMC) where she polished her journalist skills and got a job at KTN as a news anchor, in 1990.
“My father would drive my four siblings and me to the village for a two-week vacation during the long school holidays. It was more of a voyage than a journey. My late father was very conscientious of the family on board the Fiat, so he drove at a safe comfortable pace, giving a little history of all the landmarks on the journey,” she said.
Ms Kasavuli started working earlier in the media even before getting professional training thanks to her uncle who listened to her soothing voice while reading the bible and encourage her to pursue journalism.
“He said I had a remarkable voice and that my expression, articulation and diction were also very good and urged me to try my luck at the Voice of Kenya where there was a vacancy. That’s how I ended up going for an interview,” said. Catherine who was barely 18 at that time.
In 1980 she was hired as a radio continuity announcer and later moved to TV industry in 1985.
“We were 10 of us at the interview, but we were scaled down to three. Dorothy Nyong’o, Kisumu Senator (now Governor) Professor Anyang Nyongo’s wife, was in the interviewing panel,” recalls the veteran. She would later join television in 1985.
She became part of the founding team of KTN in 1990, when it began. At KTN Ms Kasavuli set the pace with the likes of legendary Njoroge Mwaura, former Cabinet Secretary Raphael Tuju and Fayaz Qureshi.
She disclosed that her first year at KTN was a discovery because the station not only offered freedom of expression but broadcasting on different wavelength like the UHF which the tv owners were required to buy and install the strange looking aerial.
The VHF was the coolest thing ever used by KBC. However, they were at some point questioned at the State House.
That was a close shave. Executive bosses were reprimanded in our presence and we dared not speak or breathe. It was tense! But relief came when we were told that despite that misdemeanour, we were professionals with a refreshing approach to news gathering and delivery and were pardoned and directed to be impartial and balanced,” she said.
In 2007 she moved to Royal Media Services (RMS) as corporate affairs manager and also as a news anchor. 2008 she won the Order the Grand Warrior Award (OGW) which was presented by then- president Mwai Kibaki. She later in 2015 took a temporary break from screen and launched her company, Kasavuli Media Group, Though she was away for some times she still remained as the people’s favorite. After seven years Kasavuli made her comeback to KBC as an anchor. However, her return was cut short as her condition worsen, it was revealed that she was suffering fro from cervical cancer.
Kasavuli first earnings was Ksh 1,500 per month. However, her commercial earning was around Ksh 3,500. She also earned Ksh 25,000 from a commercial. This amount of money at the time was like 2million. She joined a sacco called Sauti Cooperative but also opened an Eaglet account for her son.
“I would earn around Sh3,500 from commercials. One time in 1985, I earned Sh25,000 from a commercial and in those days that was like Sh2 million! I not only joined a sacco called Sauti Cooperative but also opened an Eaglet account for my son,” she explained.
The TV Icon has a good taste in fashion and she is the CEO of Kasavuli Media Group.
The mother of one stands at an average height, she is fairly tall in photos relating to her surroundings. Moreover, details on her actual hight and body measurement are not disclosed yet to the public.
Kasavuli is a married woman and a mother of one. Kasavuli is known to keep her personal information private , her husband information is not revealed.
Kasavuli’s Son, Martin
The veteran media personality is a mother of one Martin. Martin was born 1981. According to Catherine she had to leave him home to focus on her career moments she regrets missing his childhood. After her retirement she founded Kasavuli Media Group Limited in it a training school for broadcasters.
All her assets, money and income is estimated to be between $1 million and $5 million dollars. Her primary source is her career income. Kasavuli has since been able to accumulate blessings but instead prefers to lead a simple and modest lifestyle.
It is with profound sorrow that I have learnt of the death of Catherine Kasavuli who, for a long time, has been battling cervical cancer,” Duale twitted.
“Of the few female faces that first graced our televisions at news time was that of Catherine Kasavuli. She prides as the first female journalist on Kenyan Television, having started her career in 1985.”
He added, “May Allah grant her soul eternal rest and safe passage into the afterlife”.
“On my behalf, my family and the people of Mombasa, I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the late legend Ms. Catherine Kasavuli.May her soul Rest in eternal Peace,” he said.