Former CNN 'Inside Africa' Host Soni Methu Dead at 34 after Suddenly Collapsing in Kenya
Soni Methu, a Kenyan journalist who once hosted CNN’s “Inside Africa,” passed away on Thursday after suddenly collapsing in a hotel. According to her sister, an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death.
Soni was staying at a hotel in Diani, Kwale County, Kenya, when she suddenly collapsed after complaining of stomach pains.
Her sister-in-law drove her to the hospital, but she was pronounced dead upon arrival. She was 34.
Faith Methu, Soni’s younger sister, said it appeared like Soni had a seizure. An autopsy will be done to determine the cause of death.
Methu was a prominent Kenyan journalist. She graduated from Strathmore University and refined her career at the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, starring in the drama “Hila” and presenting the “Taj Show.”
She was the East African correspondent for South Africa’s eNCA before she became the host of CNN’s “Inside Africa” between 2014 and 2015.
As part of the show, Methu traveled all around her homeland, showing off the cultural richness of the continent while in contact with locals. She was proud to be the first Kenyan host of the show.
When CNN changed the format of the show to one without a presenter, Methu started working for the Chinese-owned news network CGTN, where she was still a presenter until the day of her passing.
“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of our friend and former colleague Soni Methu,” CNN said in a statement. “Our heartfelt condolences to her family and friends, from all at CNN.”
The Media Council of Kenya also offered their condolences, praising Methu as a capable and committed member of the media fraternity.
@MediaCouncilK sends its condolences to the family and friends of @Soni_Methu The media sector has lost a capable and committed member. May she rest in peace.@MediaObserverKE @AMWIK @KUJ_Kenya @KenyaEditors @eNCA @cnni@cgtnafrica @DavidOmwoyo @vicbwire @Thagreatleo pic.twitter.com/UFU3r0d3jg— Media Council of Kenya (@MediaCouncilK) April 12, 2019
Friends and colleagues also took to social media to lament her passing.
Former CGTN correspondent Vauldi Carelse, wrote:
“Woke up this morning wishing the news we received yesterday wasn’t true. The continent’s lost one of its greatest storytellers and warmest hearts: Soni Methu. From @eNCA to @CNN and @cgtnafrica she covered people’s stories with compassion and undying optimism. Rest in Power.”
“My heart goes out to Soni’s friends and family at this difficult time. She shared her genuine joy and passion on ‘Inside Africa,’ and we are all lucky to have known her and that warm smile. #rip,” wrote Errol Barnett, a CBS News correspondent.
Extremely shocked and saddened by news of the death of Soni Methu, the former host of CNN's Inside Africa at age 34. Especially because it was only a few days ago I sought to enquire about her.— Israel Laryea (@TheIsraelLaryea) April 13, 2019
Worked with her on a couple of shows.#RIPSoni#CNNInsideAfrica pic.twitter.com/kQEPuwOs7J
“Challenged to be an Inspiration. Always proudly Kenyan. African at heart,” Methu once wrote on her Twitter biography.
Rest in Peace, Soni.