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Bethwell Mbugua: Watanzania walipigwa changa la macho?

Discussion in 'Celebrities Forum' started by Kichuguu, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. Kichuguu

    Kichuguu Platinum Member

    Sep 6, 2007
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    Je mnamkumbuka "Kipanga" Bethuel Mbugua aliyetikisa anga za vyuo vikuu vya Afrika ya Mashariki mwaka 1989 na 1990 kwa kutoa mihadhara mikalikali kuhusu Cardiology?? Nilikuwa pale Mlimani alipokuja na kututia "somo" wazee wote tukamvulia kofia. Wakati huo alikuwa labda na umri wa miaka kati ya sita na 10 hivi. Binasfi nilisema kweli kuna wengine huzaliwa na vichwa.

    Angalia video yake hapa

    Juzi juzi nimesoma yaliyomtokea miaka 18 iliyopita ni ya kusikitisha sana. Nitatafuta article ile niwaletee hapa
  2. Steve Dii

    Steve Dii JF-Expert Member

    Sep 6, 2007
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    Basi huwa kila nikisoma kuhusu watoto wenye vipaji, cha kwanza kufikiria huwa ni patashika zililo likumba jiji la Dar kijana huyo Bethuel Mbugua alipokuja. Waandishi wa habari wakati huo wengi wakitokea Daily News walijimwaga Mlimani kumsikiliza genius huyo akimwaga manyanga kuhusu moyo wa binadamu n.k. Duuh, kumbe siku hizi ana dreadlocks! Kichuguu, ahsante kwa kivideo hicho.

  3. b

    beman99 New Member

    Oct 1, 2007
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    BEthuel Here... just wanted to say hello... i was serching something online and there was my name in Jambo Forums...anyways... take care
  4. M

    Mwakilishi JF-Expert Member

    Oct 3, 2007
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    Hey Beman99 aka Bethuel Mbugua, what have you been up to over the years?
  5. Mtoto wa Mkulima

    Mtoto wa Mkulima JF-Expert Member

    Oct 3, 2007
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    inamaana Beman99 ndio huyo Bethuel?
  6. M

    Mwakilishi JF-Expert Member

    Oct 3, 2007
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    Mtoto wa Mkulima,
    nadhani ndio yeye si jina lake kamili ni Bethuel Beman Mbugua, kana siye basi hopefully atasema
  7. T

    The Truth JF-Expert Member

    Nov 17, 2007
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    According to your own statement of purpose which can be found here


    you admitted that when you measured your IQ score it was just above average. Nothing spectacular. So my question is if someone with just an above average IQ (100 up to 120) is considered a child prodigy/genius in Africa, does that prove that majority of Africans have indeed low IQs?

    Think about this for a second, in Asia or Europe or America, someone with that IQ range (100 - 120) is nothing special. They don't awe any university crowd where they go to speak. But someone who has an IQ over 150 is considered smart. Bill Gates is said to have 160 IQ. Some have been measured with IQ of over 180 which is a true genius. Has there ever been an African with that level of an IQ (above 180)? I have never heard of one.

    Another point to look at is, how come there are no African Mensa members? Mensa is a society of high IQ people. Does that mean Africans can't become Mensa members?
  8. M

    Misterdennis JF-Expert Member

    Nov 17, 2007
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    Kichuguu, Asante mkuu kwa videoya Bethuel.(kudos kwa kuitafuta) imenikumbusha nilivyomshangaa huyo kijana alipokuja Dar.
  9. b

    beman99 New Member

    Dec 3, 2007
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    first of all, when african people begin to compare themselves to their white neighbors based on their tools and intellectual measurements, then you will fail because our values and what dictates our survival and central meaning to living is different from theirs... that does not make us stupid or lagging behin because by comparrison; whose criteria are we using when measuring such progress; either it be economic or intelligence?... does building a robot necessaarily mean that a man is much more intelligent than his counterpart whose basic needs dictate what priorities to tackle first, perhaps food, or toil the land... whatever?... with the coming of europeans and globalization, all priorities that we lived by were erased and we were forced to turn centuries of what we knew living as - into what we were told/dictated upon to believe... were we stupid because we let our forefathers be manipulated (gifts of gunpowder and alcohol) to gather their keen and sell them as slaves? does that mean that they were smarter? the fascination with the west and the white man has blinded us that we have become more corrupted into materalism and into confining our nature as simple beings with more commandments based on western values than we are able to fulfil... thus tormenting ourselves with feelings of inferiority... by simple i mean; people whose life values and priorities were based purely on basic intrinsic needs...

    no offense, but you sound like you have already bought into the idea of james watson who has recently said that black people are stupid compared to white people... there are many black geniuses (a term conjured by our european friends), but that is not to say that because no black man has been accepted into a bones and skulls society that he is stupid or not as bright as those members already in such ego-raising company of men... what deems a man smart, or intelligent above another man? what purpose does it play by categorizing human beings into intellectual capabilities other than setting up hierachial statuses; of who is to occupy the bottom of the pyramid and who is to sit at the pinnacle of its top...?

    i think what wwe have failed to do is accept that we are who we are as G-d-blessed-africans, be happy with that thought, and live proudly knowing that we are a different people whose histories came almost before time, have survived through time, and have been hardened to live on this earth as G-D himself had so originally set it up... well, until the jungu came...

    (and no, am not a racist... just applying words to teh context of this conversation)..
  10. T

    The Truth JF-Expert Member

    Dec 4, 2007
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    If you truly believe this then maybe you should set an example yourself. Give up all the western "materialism"...and I mean everything, go back to Africa and return to your African ways. Give up clothes and go back to wearing grass skirt or running around naked, don't use automobiles just walk for miles, don't watch television or listen to the radio just sit under a tree all day, don't live any modern house with modern amenities such as electricity, plumbing etc and just live in a mud hut in an African sun etc..... Also don't use the Internet or cell phones and any other means of modern communications. Rely simply on pigeons or other natural couriers to deliver your messages... Also you should refuse modern medicine and rely solely on witchcraft or tribal medicine. Once you do all of this then you can preach but how will we hear you without western communications means?

    What percentage of the population are those black geniuses? I know of very few myself and coincidently most of the ones I know tend to have large non-black admixture i.e. they are not pure black so to speak.

    You have already answered this question yourself when you recognize that there are black geniuses. Whatever measures you used to recognize these black geniuses is what we can use.

    This is simple...who would you rather operate on you when you need a life saving surgery? Some "smart" surgeon or a stupid person? We use intellectual categories to admit people into schools, jobs, etc. Modern life is really driven my intellectual capacity when you think about it, so that is why we categorize people based on their intellect.

    Like I have said above, give up everything "jungus" gave you and see how happy you become. You can't preach that sermon while typing away on a computer on the Internet that "jungus" gave you. You don't make sense.
  11. Lussadam

    Lussadam JF-Expert Member

    May 29, 2009
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    :) Miaka kibao ya nyuma huyu jamaa Mbugua na Baba yake walikuja Tanzania na kuwarubuni wanazuoni kadhaa kuwa kijana ni Genius. Hebu pata kisa chake kidogo na nini kilifuata miaka mingi baadae.

    Consumed with the desire to see his son attend a special school for the gifted at whatever cost to him and the boy, Paul Mwaura had Master Bethwell Mbugua cram a Biology text book at the age of seven, catapulting him into the lecture circuit. A decade later, relations between father and son are somewhat frosty. What went wrong? asks ODINDO AYIEKO.

    GENIUS! screamed the headlines. NOT REALLY, replied psychiatrists and educationists of repute.

    At nine, in 1988, Bethwell Mbugua had apparently mastered the human anatomy in the manner of a pathologist. Finally the Kenyan equivalent of Albert Einstein and Leonardo Da Vinci was here with us, so it was thought.

    Armed with his mastery of anatomy - a few noticed he was only a brain and heart expert - the boy would hit the lecture circuit.

    His father, being the architect of the genius business, was ever in tow gleefully observing the amazed audiences.

    OutLook can now reveal that Mzee Paul Mwaura Mbugua's burning desire to bring up a genius at whatever cost would backfire terribly, crystalising into the current, cold and near impersonal relations between the son and the father.

    Was made to cram a Biology textbook and master physiology and functions

    "I was never a genius but just a gifted child," says Mbugua, now a records officer with Africa Medical and Research Foundation.

    Born to Paul Mwaura and Ruth Wanjiru in February 12, 1979 in Rurige village, Ol Kalou division of Nyandarua District, Mbugua was made to cram a Biology textbook and master the physiology and functions of the human brain and the heart by the time he was seven.

    "My father (with very little formal education himself) took me out of school to tutor me in Biology. He bought me books on Microbiology, acupuncture and human health sciences. He would take me to the Kenyatta National Hospital library, where he taught me how to take notes, memorise what I had written or what he had written, and then repeat the information back to him," says Mbugua.

    To see how much Mbugua was cramming, the father one day asked him to give a lecture on the brain and the heart to pupils of a local primary school. "I later did that continuously," Mbugua told Outlook last week at the Amref International headquarters.

    "I am not a genius, I was not acting, I am probably more gifted than many others but the spotlight which I found myself in after my first lecture at Ol Kalou Secondary School overwhelmed me."

    According to Mbugua, all his father wanted was for him to get quality education at an institution catering for gifted children.

    In the process of bringing up a genius, the father was inadvertently placing unrealistic expectations and goals on the son. The Mwaura we traced to Limuru was a picture of disappointment.

    Mbugua appreciates the old man's frustration with him. "I am a far cry from the genius he sought to mould."

    A young man facing a future but haunted by an eventful past, Mbugua says medicine was his first love because the father had drummed it into his head.

    Belatedly he would discover art was his forte.

    "As far back as I can remember, I grew up drawing on village dirt roads using sticks or just fingers trying to outdo other children. As kids, we would gather together and shape mud to make movable toys when it rained."

    Now, instead of lecturing on human anatomy as he used to, Mbugua would rather draw or paint.

    "When I am not going out to eat nyama choma with friends or having a beer, I sit in the house and draw. It's the best way I can express my feelings."

    Mbugua is under intense pressure to prove to the world that he was a gifted boy and not a perfect actor.

    However, many cannot understand why a child who had what it takes to be a genius doesn't have a string of PhDs.

    When Mbugua came back to Kenya from the US, a contributor to the Daily Nation's 'Watchman" column, Mwongera Mutiga was disappointed.

    Wrote Mutiga of Mbugua: "With his purported brain power, one would have expected the Mbugua who returned home recently to have earned a couple of doctorates in complex fields like nuclear physics or cardiology. A Bachelor's degree in Biochemistry is hardly what we were expecting from the highly acclaimed child prodigy of yesteryear. What happened in the US?"

    But Mbugua, who is settling in after 12 years in the United States says such expectations are misplaced; that he does not regret having come back home with a mere degree.

    "I am better off than those suffering in America fearing to take a flight back home because they have failed to achieve what took them there. At least I am not cleaning the streets or washing dishes."

    I came back home because it is what I wanted

    Of the comments people make about him, Mbugua says; "I am a slave of my own past, because of such expectations people want to see me as a different breed, probably I am just a little bit gifted."

    Waxing patriotic, he says, "I came back home because it is what I wanted. United States is not my home, I miss part of my life because of the upbringing I had, I know no family warmth and I regret that aspect of my life," he says.

    The son of a former cobbler, dazzled Kenyans when at only nine years, he lectured professional forums on the physiology and the functions of the heart and the brain.

    He instantly became a sensation, with top government officials wanting to be part of his hitherto unwritten story. Meanwhile, his father, Paul Mwaura, marketed him as the first genius from Kenya.

    The boy's fame would spread beyond Kenyan borders. He lectured a forum at the University of Dar es Salaam that had former Tanzania President Mwalimu Julius Nyerere and incumbent Hassan Mwinyi in attendance.

    Determined to get the boy where he wanted, the father would get more daring to the point of being foolhardy.

    In 1988, it dawned unto the father that the only person who could assist his son was the then President Daniel arap Moi.

    During a presidential visit to Nyandarua, Macharia saw to it that his son sat near the presidential dais.

    "It had all been planned down by my father. All he wanted was for me to tell the president that I needed to go to a special school for gifted children."

    When the president's security kind of dropped its guard, father winked at the son to make the dangerous move.

    Security men tried to stop me but I was too quick for them

    "I dashed towards the president. The security men tried to stop me but I was too quick for them. Kibaki (Mwai) who was then the Vice President and seated next to the President asked the security men to let me talk to the president. It felt good being close to the powers that be, but I got nothing out of it."

    When debate about him took centre stage, Psychiatrist Dr David Kabithe did an I Q test on him and dismissed him as a good actor and not a genius. Why? The genius did not know the difference between Hamburger and Hamburg.

    His parents separated when he was just 16 months old, hence the strong bond that developed between him and the father.

    At two and half years old, he could write and was out of the baby class in six months.

    Classes one to three were done in a year. In 1983, Mbugua walked out of a science class, claiming that the teacher was boring. Not amused, the master ordered that he be taken back to nursery school but a disillusioned Mbugua decided to quit school and teach himself philosophy and typing until he was compelled back to class.

    In the next 18 months, he had whizzed past standard five and six before his father took him to Form Four at Ol Kalou Secondary school.

    All this time, Mbugua had a minimal grasp of the other subjects apart from Biology.

    Come the O'Level exams when he was just 8-years-old and education officers directed that he be taken back to Standard Two.

    The then chief inspector of schools, Tom Sitima, directed that Mbugua be removed from his father's custody and taken back to class of his age.

    But Mr Mwaura would rather his son gave public lectures than attending classes.

    Within two months after Mbugua appeared on television lecturing university students, he had been invited to about 70 schools and several teacher training colleges and universities. Naturally, the father was in charge of his diary.

    Well-intentioned, the father had also sent an SOS for his son to be taken to a special school for gifted children.

    Mbugua says they even tried to go to Unicef (United Nations Children Education Fund) for help but failed.

    Next, Macharia contacted the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees so that Mbugua could be moved to a country where his needs could be catered for and also to the United States Embassy but to no avail.

    He got his chance in 1991. American Professor Lenore Blum who had watched Mbugua during the Pan African Congress of Mathematicians in August 1991 organised for the boy to visit the US to join the Mirman School for gifted children.

    However, in the US, Mbugua was to realise that academics was not just about the Biology of the heart and the brain.

    The prodigy could not solve a simple arithmetic sum of a quarter plus three-quarters.

    He knew next to nothing about history while his English was pathetic. Consequently, Mbugua was forced to repeat classes to catch up with the rest of his age-mates.

    "They had to assess me to know how much I knew. I had been out of school for six years. Here I was being examined in almost everything yet all I knew was [selective] Biology. I had scant knowledge of mathematics and knew nothing in history or music," he says candidly.

    The school recommended that he be brought back to Kenya, but Mbugua was lucky to get a second chance.

    At only 12, and having been out of class for almost half of his life, Mbugua was finding schooling very strange. Being a foreigner did not make matters any better for him.

    Classmates called him names and made jokes about his strange accent.

    "I cared less because I did not understand whatever they were talking about."

    He had just landed in the United States a week earlier and everything was foreign to him.

    "I was 12, I travelled by plane all by myself with a tag showing that I was an unaccompanied minor."

    Blum would buy him new clothes at the airport

    Dr Lenore Blum would buy him new clothes at the airport into which he changed immediately.

    "When I came out of the store I could have passed for any other American child-but my Kikuyu accent let me down," he jokes.

    The language barrier would make things more difficult, so he buried himself, in his unrealised talent - art.

    "Due to the cultural barrier, I repeated 7th grade twice. It was in the art class that I first felt comfortable and accepted, and excelled well above others. Art became the language to convey to others what was in my mind, how I was feeling, and what my life was like in Kenya," he says.

    "I first realised that I had some talent in art when some of my drawings were selected and placed on the main office bulletin board. This happened more than once, fuelling my need to do more. The encouragement to keep drawing came from my teachers and peers."

    Mbugua talks of loneliness in America. "For once I felt like a minority. I kept mostly to myself though the families I lived with supported me. They gave me everything but I still felt hollow."

    He was later to be admitted at the Harvard Wesley school. There, he was more comfortable having had caught up with the rest. He passed his 12th grade examinations (equivalent to form four examinations) and was admitted to Macalester College.

    At Macalester, the school where United Nations Secretary General Koffi Annan was educated, Mbugua mingled well with the rest and was a member of the football team.

    "I decided to do a degree course in Biochemistry but it became a chore... I was not really interested. My goal was to be a doctor because that is what was expected of me. I found it extremely hard to be involved in art while taking Biochemistry courses, going to labs and working to help pay for my college education."

    That was when he decided to come back home

    At this point, memories of the past started resurfacing. "I realised that I did not have anybody I could call brother, sister or cousin. Everyone was adopted. I started feeling homesick."

    That was when he decided to come back home. "I was not going to live in a foreign country and toil like I didn't have a home. I got a job at the US Department of Social Services but my mind was fixed on coming home," he says.

    When he looks at his past, Mbugua says he does not want to be an incomplete story. "I don't want to be a has-been."

    By the time he was coming back he was suffering from depression. People claiming to be his relatives were writing to him asking for support, "yet I myself needed it. I realised that I was becoming a slave to other people's expectations."

    Mbugua had not seen his father for 12 years, save for the two months in 1994. They were drifting away from each other. The boy-father relationship of the whiz-kid days was gone. "We were like strangers from two worlds apart."

    When he came back for good late last year, sporting dreadlocks, the father gave him a disapproving look. He was not the genius the old man had moulded from year two.

    The father's house in Limuru had just been destroyed in a fire and the old man was homeless. He had quit making shoes to hire out public address systems.

    "I have the feeling he still misses the nine-year old who gave lectures, expecting we would pick up from where I left, but it cannot be the same again. I am an adult now."

    For the next eight months Mbugua did nothing much but to relax until it dawned on him that he needed to do something with himself.

    He looked for a job at Amref but there was only a vacancy for a manual job in the stores - a volunteer one that earned him Sh200 bus fare daily to Tigoni home where he lives with his aunt.

    Three months into the job, he was offered a contract to assist the research institute in record management and compiling of historical reports.

    M bugua's immediate supervisor Nicky Blundell Brown, the Special Events and Amref Heritage Co-ordinator, says Mbugua works with no supervision at all.

    But Mbugua who spends most of his days in the library prefers being to himself.

    "He rarely engages in a long conversation with people but is also social," says a colleague.

    "I am not as boring as you think, I enjoy good company. I go out to have a drink and nyama choma with friends, but that does not mean I dance till dawn," he says.

    ukitaka kupata picha za jamaa alivyo kwa sasa bonyeza hapa
    Last edited: May 29, 2009
  12. Y

    YE JF-Expert Member

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  13. Abdulhalim

    Abdulhalim JF-Expert Member

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    Huyu baba yake alitakiwa akamatwe kwa ku-ruin maisha ya huyu bwanamdogo. Madingi wengine sijui vipi!
  14. Yo Yo

    Yo Yo JF-Expert Member

    May 29, 2009
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    kwa hiyo nae ni celebrity?
  15. Abdulhalim

    Abdulhalim JF-Expert Member

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    Soma article, usikimbilie kumtawadha mtoto kabla hajaenda haja.
  16. D

    Dotori JF-Expert Member

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    I remember this guy coming to Tanzania with celebrity pomposity to give a lecture at Muhimbili in early 90s.
  17. Steve Dii

    Steve Dii JF-Expert Member

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  18. Nyani Ngabu

    Nyani Ngabu Platinum Member

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    Ma genius waliwa jana kwenye spelling bee
  19. Dark City

    Dark City JF-Expert Member

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    Hapa itabidi wazazi wafikiri mara mbili mbili kabla ya kuanza kutangaza upuuzi. Hata hivyo nadhani jamaa ailikuwa na kitu fulani special ila alikosa watu wa kumsaidia akiwa katika mazingira ambayo si hatari kama US. Kama baba yake angejua hivyo na kwenda taratibu labda story ingekuwa taratibu. Kwa sasa itabidi atoe mihadhara ya upasuaji wa moyo kwenye sanaa!
  20. L

    Limbukeni Senior Member

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    Nilimtafuta sana huyu sikujua sir name yake asante sana mkuu