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Bahati, marriage and fatherhood

News
 Bahati with his wife and children. [Facebook]

Kenyan contemporary artiste Kevin 'Bahati' Kioko is known for his music, and top hits like Mama, Machozi and Pete Yangu.

He also opens up his life to his fans through social media and YouTube videos, where it's hard to ignore the role he plays as a father to his four young children.

And with Father's Day falling on Sunday, June 18 this year, fathers, like Bahati, get to be appreciated on the annual occasion.

On Father's Day 2021, the singer's doting wife, content creator Diana Marua set up a lowkey family surprise for her beau.

In a video uploaded on her YouTube channel and garnering over 700,000 views, Diana documented a blissful evening full of warm gifts and special surprises for Bahati.

"We are looking at Do-It-Yourself ideas of doing things," she says in the video, where she and the children hang around brainstorming on ways to surprise the patriarch.

"Daddy has done so much for us, hasn't he?" she asks Bahati's 8-year-old daughter Mueni, who enthusiastically nods.

The children then record a sweet video clip for their father, where they thank him and wish him a happy Father's Day.

Then, Diana and the children head out for shopping for gifts, and because she is feeling under the weather, calls in a Chef, Chef Julius, to whip up a special meal for Bahati.

By the time he gets home that evening, he is in for a magical time.

After blindfolding him, she leads Bahati to the house where the kids are waiting with gifts. The family enjoys the meal, and then Bahati unwraps his gifts, which include handy electrical gadgets. He and his children then cut a cake in a sweet candle-lit moment.

Last year, Diana poured her heart out in an Instagram message.

"Happy Father's Day to the one who God created for my children. Our children are blessed to call you daddy. Thank you for loving (them) unconditionally," she wrote.

The singer has been outspoken about fatherhood and constantly uses his platform to spread positive messages about the role of being a dad.

"One of the things that I had to accept is that when you become more responsible, you grow," he said in an interview on how being a father had changed him.

 Bahati with his son.

"I am praying that I may become a role model to the ghetto child, the Eastlands child. So, I need to show them the process, from dating to marriage and raising a family. It helps me remain at my best," he said.

Another popular dad is the former rugby player turned chef Dennis Ombachi, who is raising two young children in the limelight.

Ombachi prepares tantalising meals captured on his TikTok account and other social media platforms, and sometimes, his toddlers make cute appearances on his videos trying out food, or on his Instagram account at other times.

While responding to a question on how becoming a dad changed him, Ombachi told CNN: "Becoming a dad changed a lot of priorities in my life. I decided now to just focus fully on my mental health because I need to be there for my children."

He spoke about his struggles with mental health during the sit-down, where he said that he had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder after suffering from depression.

The self-taught chef, who also goes by the name "The Roaming Chef, spoke out about the stigma surrounding men and mental health in Africa.

"It took me two, almost three years for me to tell my parents, and they came to understand and are now supportive. It is all about breaking the stigma," he said, adding that he often used cooking to get through difficult days.

 Dennis Ombachi with his children. [Instagram]

The former Machachari actor, content creator and artiste Tyler Kamau Mbaya is a well-known known father. Tyler, 23, tackles fatherhood skilfully and shows that he can handle its ups and downs despite being young.

In an interview soon after his baby girl, Astra Kamau, was born, Tyler described fatherhood as "exhilarating."

"But you still have that anxiety about, what kind of dad are you going to be. I told (my girlfriend) Georgina that I am trying to be the best dad," he said.

Opening up about raising a newborn at the time, Tyler said that one of the first things that was interrupted was his sleep routine as he tended to his partner and child.

"Timetable ya kulala ni yeye, mtoi, ndio ana dictate," Tyler said.

"Anyone who is a father, shout out to you. Those who aspire to be good dads, let's stay strong."

He then opened up about growing up without a father and his feelings on the experience now that he is an adult.

"My dad was not around when I was growing up. I understand that it may not have been his choice and that the circumstances led to it. But as for me, I will always try to be so close to my children."

He applauded his late mother for how she stepped up to play both roles.

"The thing about my (late) dad being away is that we did not have time to a build friendship. Everything else was fine. He would provide and send money but the thing is, being there physically is how you build a connection with your child. By the time he came back, I was already a teenager and there was a rift in our relationship," he said.

 Tyler Mbaya with his daughter. [Instagram]

Some other well-known celebrity dads in Kenya are; the singer Arrow Bwoy who is a first-time dad to son Haseeb Kai with his celebrated singer wife Nadia Mukami, popular fitness trainer Shiv Simani, an outspoken girl-dad who adores his daughters, Brown Mauzo, Vera Sidika's singer husband, and Sauti Sol's Fancy Fingers.

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