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MCL journalist Kagashe is dead

Dar es Salaam. An up-and-coming journalist with The Citizen, Mr Beatus Kagashe, 31, has passed away on Saturday evening at Ocean Road Cancer Institute after a long battle with blood cancer (leukemia).
Mr Kagashe was admitted at Ocean Road Hospital for two weeks after spending more than two months at Muhimbili National Hospital and The Aga Khan hospital, undergoing preliminary diagnosis and treatment.
The family spokesperson, Mr Gasper Mikimba, said Mr Kagashe died at 8.45pm and that they were going on with arrangements for transporting the body to Kagera Region for burial.
According to a schedule released yesterday after consultations among family members, Kagashe's friends will pay him their last respects at the Christ the King Catholic Church in Tabata Bima at around 3pm today. His body will then be transported to his home village of Rubale in Bukoba Rural District for burial on Wednesday.
In her comments, the mother of the deceaced, Ms Getrude Kagashe, thanked Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL), where  the late Kagashe worked before his passing, and its staff for their concern when her son was hospitalised.
''I thank you for the cooperation which you have accorded our family and my deceased son; it’s a spirit that should continue,'' Ms Kagashe told the team of MCL staff.
Mr Mikimba said Kagashe’s death was a big blow to his family, community and the nation at large since he was still young and expected to contribute in building his future and that of the country. Mr Mikimba said it was obvious close family members, colleagues, friends and acquaintances, had hoped and prayed that Kagashe would pull through, secure a discharge and bounce back to active life but it was not to be.
Commenting on the sad news, The Citizen managing editor, Mr Bakari Machumu, described him as a friendly person, open-minded and one who spoke his mind.

He said he received the news on Mr Kagashe’s death on Saturday evening with great shock.

“We thought he was responding well with the treatment…it was a shock to hear all of the sudden things have changed. I last saw him about week ago at Ocean Road hospital, I thought he had enough energy to fight the disease but God knows better that we do,” Mr Machumu said.

He said The Citizen and Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL) have lost one of the assets where the company had invested fully, he said noting that Mr Kagashe was too young and showed prosperous future.

The managing editor recalls that the deceased was the first product of the company’s talent search initiative established by the company in 2007. Mr Kagashe was among of the first five beneficiaries, in the first batch, who were trained in Media Lab in Nairobi in 2007/08.

“He was one amongst five who qualified from a pool of hundreds of finalists students from local Universities who sat for the Mwananchi Communications Limited test to join the Media Lab. They were joined by other students from Kenya and Uganda in a similar fashion… I think that speaks volumes about Mr Kagashe potentials,” Mr Machumu noted.

Mr Machumu said Mr Kagashe expressed his potential to the paper and the nation at large.
“We mourn the loss of a friend… we mourn the loss of service he could have rendered to wananchi and his country,” he said.

But Mr Machumu extended his gratitude to The Citizen staff who were hand in hand with Mr Kagashe and his family during his illness. He said people from The Citizen had frequently donated blood, visited him and offered their prayers while he was hospitalised at Aga Khan, Muhimbili National Hospital and then Ocean Road Cancer Institute.

As part of treatment, Mr Kagashe needed a lot of blood.
Meanwhile, the opposition Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) expressed sorrow on Mr Kagashe’s death.

A condolence statement signed by Chadema Information officer, Mr Tumaini Makene, said Mr Kagashe will always be remembered as one of keen journalist who used his profession to push for changes in the society.

Mr Kagashe was born in February 23, 1981 in Kagera region. He attended primary school education at Bilele primary school in Bukoba town between 1990 and 1996. He joined secondary education at Ihungo secondary school from 1997 to 2000 and later attended high school at Mpwapwa secondary in Dodoma.

Mr Kagashe joined the University of Dar es Salaam pursuing the Bachelor of Journalism (BA Journalism) at the institute of Journalism and Mass Communication (IJMC) now School of Journalism and Mass Communication (SJMC) between 2004 and 2007.

The courageous Kagashe registered for the Masters in Public Administration (MPA) in 2010 and managed to graduate in November 2011.

In 2007/08 the talented Kagashe attended Media Lab training at Nation Media Group (NMG) in Nairobi, Kenya.

Upon returning in 2008, Mr Kagashe was employed by Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL),publishers of The Citizen newspaper, Mwananchi and Mwanaspoti and served as a News Reporter for The Citizen daily.

The deceased is survived by a widow, Drosta and one-year son, Emmanuel Mujuni.

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