Rugby great Ayimba fighting for his life in hospital after contracting cerebral malaria

Benjamin Ayimba at work. [File, Standard]

Kenya rugby coach Benjamin Ayimba is fighting for his life in hospital following a bout of cerebral malaria.

The family of the rugby legend says Ayimba is critically ill and fighting for his life in a city hospital.

Ayimba, Kenya’s best ever Rugby Sevens coach, has been battling cerebral malaria. The ailment has kept him away from the public eye since the start of 2021, according to the family.

For the last three weeks, Ayimba has been in hospital as doctors try to save his life. He is currently admitted in HDU and cannot recognize anyone or speak.

“All this while we have tried to maintain his privacy and dignity but it has reached a point where we can’t keep quiet anymore,” says the family.

Transfer to KNH

Ayimba eldest son, Brian, told The Standard Sports the hospital has asked the family to settle a Sh2.2millon bill before they can move him to Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) for specialised treatment.

“The family thought it was not going to be this serious. So, we didn’t want to cause alarm but where we have reached now, we call upon the rest of the country to come to our help,” Brian appealed.

Ayimba represented Kenya at Rugby Sevens World Cups (2001 and 2005) as a player and 2009 and then led the country to IRB Sevens victory in Singapore in 2016 as a coach. He has been out of the public limelight since 2020.

Brian says his father is in good care of doctors, who have done extremely well. “It has really been difficult for us as a family, especially having to handle the privacy of a public figure as “Benja,” he said.

“With the hospital bill now standing at over Sh2.2 million, we need help as we have exhausted family resources,” Brian said.

Paybill number: 8021673 

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