Kenya’s first Coronavirus recovery patient has been heavily bullied by Kenyans Online.
Brenda Ivy Cherotich, who was also patient zero had come forward after her recovery to speak to Kenyans on her recovery journey.
It was then that a section of Kenyans online took to social media to discredit and question the truth in her story. To make matters worse, her personal conversations and nude photos were leaked online, which lead to her being heavily trolled and bullied online.
— myk dj maliq ?? (@mykdjmaliq) April 1, 2020
In the wake of this, Health CS Mutahi Kagwe was angered by the Kenyans’ behaviour calling them out for trivializing government efforts to combat the disease. He said he was shocked at the efforts and the two recoveries were viewed as Public Relations gimmicks. He then called for the police to arrest these social media abusers.
Supporting CS’s Kagwe’s statement, TV personality Yvonne Okwara’s comments on the issue also put a target on her back, with Kenyans on Twitter harassing her as well.
I strongly disagree with Yvonne Okwara. Your statement is not objective. It is emotional and stinks to high heavens. Speaking of which where was your voice when your fellow women stripped a MAN (Lonyangapuo) naked and shared his nude photos? This is toxic
— Lord Mutai (@ItsMutai) April 3, 2020
Ms Okwara had called the actions on social media shameful, saying that Kenyans were more concerned on clap backs to bring people down. She noted that Brenda’s bullying was unfairly targeted at her because she was a woman, as Brian, the second recovery had not undergone the same treatment.
“People on social media need to be prosecuted. If Kenyans have questions about her story, they should poke holes on that. It has nothing to do with being personal. They have to be accountable for their actions.” Said Okwara.
She also stated the irony of Brenda surviving COVID-19 only to die of depression and called on the health ministry to ensure that Brenda received a lot of social support, such as undergoing therapy.
How do you call this in your language?
Courtesy: Yvonne Okwara pic.twitter.com/vnj2CvaOj6
— Victor Mochere (@VictorMochere) April 3, 2020
We disagree with the blanket condemnation of social media users, but also not condone the fact that they were cyberbullied. It is important to note that female celebrities face a lot of cyberbullying when they make controversial statements and does not happen to their male counterparts when they do the same thing.