The Pocket-Sized Las Vegas Addicting Kenya’s Youths
By Idah Waringa
Germany fans were on a high after their team beat Italy on post-match penalties at the Matmut Atlantique stadium in Bordeaux, France, qualifying for the semifinal of the 2016 Union of European Football Associations (UEFA Euro 2016) championship. The Italians in the stands were visibly disappointed, with some in tears over the painful loss. A few days later and thousands of miles away in Kenya, a community was also in tears over the results of the game, but for very different reasons.
A young man had been found dead, hanging behind his mother’s house. The Kenyatta University student had committed suicide days after losing money he’d placed on a bet in the UEFA quarterfinal. More than three years later, the shock of this tragedy, which barely registered in the national consciousness, is still vivid for Nelson Bwire, a reformed self-described serial sports gambler.
“I was a student at the same university then,” 25-year-old Bwire told Al Jazeera. “They said he bet his entire school fees on the Euro game and lost $800.”
Photo courtesy of Anaya Katlego.